What a project – I’m four days in and just finished the upper bodice. This has been so much fun, and a challenge on many levels. So much so that I’m thinking that 2 posts will be better than one loong one, and I know that not everyone wants to read the sewing details 🙂
This is an interesting pattern – it has a definitive retro vibe, even though it was released in 2009, and it’s just full of surprises…
I worked on the pattern for 3 days before I cut my fabric. Most of this time was spent on the skirt. Even though the pattern calls for only 3 yards/60″ fabric in my size, it has a huge, voluminous, more-than-a-circle skirt. Many reviewers of the pattern mentioned how heavy the dress is once it’s lined. I think it could be heavy unlined! And when I laid out the pattern pieces, I totally disliked the skirt -the pocket, the volume, the back-gather overkill, the whole thing.
So I pulled out the skirt from Vogue 9168. It has the same lines, it’s also cut on the bias, and it’s ‘calm’, not fussy.
Even better, it’s a maxi length, so I don’t have to add 11″ at the hem (V8577 is midi-length at it’s longest, and shorter than a midi on me at 5’7″).
I haven’t sewn V9168 yet, so I put a lot of work into the adaptation.
The V9168 skirt is shy of being a full circle, but I took down the volume a little more. My small change actually removes about 10″ from the width at my hip, from 62″ to 52″:
This and the original skirt are both cut on the bias. Long bias seams can be tricky stuff, so I used the layout directions from V9168 (flipping of the pattern is really important, more below)…
Yes! I got my edges right. I.e., the side seam comes together with opposing vertical grainlines:
Note: if bias boggles you, here’s a great link to Bias 101 by Marcy Tilton, Threads magazine.
On to the bodice. No lining! It’s too hot here. I can’t wear linen against my neck, waist, etc., so a simple binding around the neck was out. Instead, I drafted facings for the front neckline and lined the back yoke. To prevent bloom show-through, I used white cotton/poly broadcloth for my innards.
Small irritant: the pattern uses the same armscye for both the sleeveless and sleeved version. Crazy. I trimmed and reshaped the armscye quite a bit, taking away from the shoulder and putting a little more curve in the front and back. I had to wait until the bodice was sewn together to make these changes, even though the need for them was apparent from the beginning.
I’m getting jazzed now, and have the waistband ready for attachment this morning.
Bye for now! Coco