Friday, September 9, 2011
Pattern Description: The simple, minimalist style of this dress is always trendy and interesting. Admittedly, they also require a little more attention from the sewer as they need to be carefully tried on and fitted. The body-hugging silhouette of the dress is produced both by the pattern design and by shaping it by pressing during construction. The waistline is raised slightly above the narroest part of the body. The skirt has contouring darts at the waist, and the slanted bust darts start at the side seams of the bodice.
Pattern Sizing: Ottobre sizes (similar to Burda) 34-48. As I was using a woven, I made a 40.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? The shape was the same. Their dress is a nice, quiet, well-bred gray. Mine is not.
Were the instructions easy to follow? Ottobre's instructions are fabulous. You don't even notice the lack of illustrations, and anyone who has tackled even one Burda pattern would find these a breeze.
I also liked the neckline - nice and wide, a flattering look, without having to worry about the depth of a Burda neckline. Sometimes it's just nice to go to work and not worry about flashing too much cleavage at the wrong lawyer.
Fabric Used: Cotton voile purchased at PR Weekend Chicago at Fishman's Fabrics. I waffled about the purchase, but several PR members, including Sherril Miller, basically strong-armed me into it. (Thank you, ladies, you were right).
The dresses in this pattern series had some nice vintage touches, but the only one that is really structural is the dart at the back neck/shoulder which I think makes such a difference in fit. The inside facing is cut without the dart, and makes the neckline lay beautifully.
I had issues with lining the dress - not technical issues, but color. Because the cotton voile is somewhat sheer, my first choice of lining (black) made the print muddy. Brown wasn't much better. I scrounged through the lining stash until I came up with some ivory, which brightened the light parts of the print.
I did not line the sleeves. The sleeve is fitted, and I was afraid that it would be too snug if I lined it, so I turned the bodice lining under at the armhole and hand sewed it to the seam allowance. I also hand sewed the skirt and sleeve hems, and attached the lining to the invisible zip. Lots of hand-sewing on this dress, but the fabric was so lightweight that I knew any machine stitches would show, and not in a good way.
The embellishment doesn't go around to the back neckline because Lily the sewing room cat made off with 3 of the larger pieces. When they resurface on the sewing room floor, I'll add them. Or not; I don't actually miss them despite having made fun of RTW tops with embellishments that stop at the shoulders.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I would definitely recommend both this pattern and Ottobre generally. It's not an exciting looking magazine if you're used to a steady diet of Burda or Patrones, but it's full of good, basic, useful patterns that can be used in a variety of ways. Since I got the bodice fit the way I want, I'll definitely be using this pattern again.
Conclusion: I was told that this pattern had great potential to be dowdy, but I think fit and fabric can win out any time. I'm happy with my dress, and I think I'll get a lot of wear out of this one.