Saturday, March 2, 2013

Admit Defeated

I have to admit - I'm frustrated... again.

For my next project, I had plans to make this awesome Retro Butterick dress out of a brown satin-ish (I don't know exactly what it is - bought it a long time ago) fabric I had in my stash.

I knew right away this was going to be challenging because... well... Empire waist.  As I've mentioned in the past, I am VERY long from shoulder to apex and have never had anything with an empire waist fit me properly.  I knew I was going to be making a muslin of this - maybe more then one.

I started by just pinning the pattern to my shirt.  It was almost laughable.  The bottom of the bodice hit me about 1/2 way down my chest - pretty much right on my apex.  I did a little measuring  and figured out 'about' what I would need to add to the pattern, but I was unsure how to do that and keep the shape of the pattern.  I knew I needed to add length in the front, but didn't need to add any under the arm - so I traced up a pattern on the first muslin, cut it and laid it over my chest.  yeah... I almost got it right.  As in, I made it long enough in the very front, but not all the way across.  Take two.

This time I retraced the front on the muslin with the estimated fabric added to the front and also cut the back.  I also sewed all the seams and tried it on completely.  Better!  I still didn't have the shape right, but I came up with a plan.  I pulled the fabric under, held it against my body and traced out the shape I wanted with a marker.  I went back to my cutting table, added seam allowance, cut again, tried it on again and was happy.

Next I cut the skirt.  Given the measurements on the box I needed to add 5" to skirt to fit correctly.  Since the skirt had 4 seams I added 5/8ths to each cut.  I sewed it all up tried it on and was sewing in a sea of muslin.  OOOps.  When I pinned the skirt I figured I had about 8" too much - hmmm.  At that point I figured I didn't need to add anything to the skirt and I would leave it as is.  One more muslin to go.

For the next trial I cut everything out of an old sheet and went to work.  It all went together well and I was super excited as I put in the zipper and looked over the finished product (minus lining and trim).  I tried it on and it all went wrong there, and I've got the photos to prove it.

The bodice that used to fit was now pulling tight due to gathering it to fit the skirt.  The skirt -- the skirt was just soooo tight.

And from the side you can see that my ghetto bootee was totally messing up the back of the dress.  

And the weirdness that was going on in the back neckline.  *sigh*

And to top it all off when I shook out fabric I realized I only had 3 yards and this dress need at least 4.

I still believe I can make this work but it's going to take a bit more tweaking (and new fabric) so I've set it aside for now and I'm going to move onto some other projects while I figure it out.

Oh and if anyone has any ideas on how to fix the back of this dress... Sway back adjustment - or maybe just a bit more ease in the hips will fix it.

'til I figure it out I'm going to work on some quick wins - a few blouses.  And the first has an empire waist so I can take what I learned with this dress and apply it. 

No comments:

Post a Comment