Sunday, August 05, 2012
Dress #11 :: Rhubarb
Can you tell I've been watching a lot of Mad Men?
A lot. What can I say about this dress, except that it's princess seamed, I converted the boat neck to a V in the back, and managed to cut it out of 1.5 yards of fabric, a full 5/8 yard shy of what the pattern calls for. If you look closely, you might be able to see where I pieced together one of the back panels (luckily, had enough scraps to match the pattern). I mean, I'm short, right? So I usually buy anywhere from 1/2 to 1 yard less than they call for, and generally it works out, except I'd forgotten this was a directional print (Moda voile, but very Liberty-esque - Debbie, you've got an eye! - underlined with a white cotton voile). However, after this aggravation I think I will up my minimum "I think this would make a lovely dress, not sure of the pattern yet" amount to a flat 2 yards. Retracing pattern pieces at 3/8" seam allowance, sweating over cutting layouts ... just shell out a little extra, woman! It's worth it.
I definitely am learning more about ease, and my body type, as I sew blouses and dresses. For instance, this dress taught me that I like bodices to nip in at my rib cage because my belly tends to protrude not far below that, and definitely before I get to my natural waist, which means that my narrowest point from side to side might be at my natural waist, but my narrowest point from front to back is at my rib cage (if that makes sense). So if you go by generic sewing patterns that call for a gentle tapering in towards the natural waist, that actually creates a rather dumpy effect on me. I certainly don't want to overfit, but the first iteration of this dress (before I took in the seams at the ribcage, tapering to nothing at the waist, and then shortened the whole thing so that the bodice and skirt proportions would work) made me look about 10 pounds heavier.
So there's my sewing productivity for the month of July! I think I'll add some belt loops but I like that this dress looks fine on it's own. The colors in the fabric remind me of the pretty reds and greens in rhubarb, which I think of as a harbinger of spring, and which is exactly what this dress evokes for me.
(And Sigrid --- no rush on your version! Summer is for lolling about! Table excavation shmcavation ... I mean, enjoy your vacation?)