Wednesday, 14 March 2012

The Birthday Dress - Part 1

It's my birthday this Friday and to celebrate Mdblm is taking me out for dinner. I am hoping to have a spectacular new dress to wear for the occasion but I'm concerned I may have bitten off more than I can chew.

Advance 2824

I chose this pretty 1940s afternoon / evening dress from my collection and I knew I had some beautiful forest green micro-crepe in the stash which would work perfectly. Sadly, I found I only have enough green for a blouse, but I did have 3m of flannel grey in the same micro-crepe which would suit. I'm not entirely convinced it's a good colour for me but I really didn't want to have to buy more material. 

In the past, I've found the fit of Advance patterns to be average at best so I decided to invest some time in making a muslin. I'm also not feeling all that confident about the gathered front on the bodice so a test version is probably a good idea. Here's where I'm up to:

Bodice front with gathering stitches
After staring at the instructions for what seemed like hours, the light finally went on and I was underway!

After sewing the centre front seam and clipping the excess, I attached the stay just below the neckline V and made gathering stitches on each side of the seam. While it is a bit fiddly, the neat thing about this design is that all the messy gathering and clipped seams are hidden beneath the stay. No need for additional finishing on this bit!

The muslin of the bodice is done and, as expected, it will need a bit of tweaking in terms of fit. The micro-crepe will make the bodice front appear a lot softer and will fall much better than this crappy cotton, but it's at least given me a better idea of construction.

I cut the dress from the micro-crepe yesterday; the skirt was completed last night and was a dream to sew; and I'm now back to working on the gathered front. Phew!

Time's a wasting so I'd better get back to it.

- Tamara

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