|Pattern Description: |
Lined jacket A has princess seams, welt pockets, flaps and sleeve with slit; lined dress B has front and back pleats, front and back darts, back zipper, back slit and topstitching detail, length is 1" above mid-knee; pants C have fly front, front, back darts and self-faced yoke, purchased belt.
I made a straight 10! Consider this cautionary because I normally size the hips down to an 8 or a 6.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes, even though I used crazy fabric (see more below)
Were the instructions easy to follow?
Instructions are very detailed and have lots of information on fitting using the Palmer/Pletsch methods, however I don't like their construction process for this dress. I prefer an all machine clean finish. Nicegirl/Slapdash has an excellent tutorial on her blog. This dress is quite narrow at the shoulders, so I needed the long handle of a plastic cooking spoon to help push the fabric through.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
Talk about bang for your buck, this pattern has it all! I mostly bought it for the dress though since that's what I like to sew and wear when I'm not working.
The lining for this dress includes the neckline pleats which seams odd to me because this creates extra bulk. I think converting the neckline pleats to bust darts would be a better option for the lining. I'm not exactly sure how to do this though because everything I've read has always explained how to move darts not pleats. I'm open to suggestions!
Not sure if I should be proud or embarrased... It's a cotton/poly shower curtain (seems like a mid-weight twill) that I bought from Marshall's for $15, and I lined it with some lightweight white cotton from old sheets.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I used a border print. To make placing the print a bit easier, I copied the pattern pieces so that I was working with full dress pieces, and I wouldn't have to be place on a fold.
I spent HOURS agonized on the placement. Since the print is so bold, I was concerned about inapporpriate placement, and about transitions at the side seams, which I thought would be a bit jarring and detract from the design. The best option I came up with was to invert the pieces for the back, so that I could semi-match one sides. I hope the inversion is less obvious than having a drastic color change at the seams.
I thought the back neckline pleats were a nice design detail but they created quite a problem. If you read the Palmer/Pletsch book, they do talk a good bit about how forward shoulders and high round back are becoming more common in younger people due to our computer work. I think they've built this into the dress design. While I technically have both, mine aren't severe, so I rarely adjust for it. The pleats were too much in my heavier fabric and created a giant *pouf* over the shoulder blades that made me look like the hunchback of Notre Dame.
My quick fix for this, since I didn't make a muslin, was to change the back pleat to a dart and create a seam joining it with the back waistline dart. This eliminated the extra fabric over the shoulder blades. This also revealed that the back neckline was a bit too large, so I then deepened the neckline pleat to remove the excess. I also didn't like how high the back was (since this makes it difficult for me to zip) so I lowered it 1.5 inches. I also prefer back necklines slightly lower in case I wear a necklace. In future versions, I would probably attempt to redraft the upper back and neckline to eliminate the back dart completely and avoid the extra bulk over the shoulder blades. Mahogany Stylist mentioned that she normally makes a prominent shoulder blade adjustment, but didn't find it necessary in this dress, which confirms my findings.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Such a great basic! I love simple dresses, usually because I like difficult fabrics haha.
It's literally 2 pieces (front and back) plus a lining! A simple sheath dress is a great staple and this one can be made with only 1 1/4 yards of 45" inch fabric (made in size 10 and not including your lining of course)!! So once you work out any fit issues, this one can be a great canvas for indulging in expensive fabric.
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