I started this dress in January. Firstly, I ordered the fabric from Truro Fabrics and due to super-busy time I had't calculated the yardage properly; it would be ok if it wasn't for the check to be matched. I decided to give it a try anyway and one day I cut out the pieces.
Then it was time for good, although sudden, change of flats. So I packed my cut pieces and took them along with other stuff. Unfortunately, as it usually happens, movings always have their victims and one of the pieces went missing. A small one, but it made me much more improvisational than I like to be.
And there was a temporary lack of funds so I decided to sew it up without an underlining and that was the biggest mistake. My cotton proved to be too flimsy.
Anyway, I felt that this poor dress deserved my attention and care, especially since it has been doomed from the start. So one piece after another, it has come together.
The design is Vogue 9456 from the 1958. It's a lovely pattern and so I made only one design change-I've added a detachable white band at the hem, so it would match the detachable collar & cuffs. It was actually my fiancé's suggestion-and a very good one, if I may add. It made the dress seem more put together and it introduced a pleasant-for-the-eye symmetry.
When it comes to fitting alterations, I have:
*shortened the back by 1,5 inch and tightened it by 2 inches (as you'll hopefully come to see, back measurements are my curse)
*tightened the waist by shaving off an additional inch from front pieces
*tightened the shirt, taking out an inch from each side of the side seam.
As you can clearly see, the pattern runs quite big - but fortunatelly it's not that hard to adjust. I was careful not to tighten the bodice too much, as it's supposed to be blouson.
I've matched as much plaid as I could, but the bodice's side seams and the sleeves' seams are mismatched and they bother me immensely. :]
Renée is pretty dapper with her collar.
As I've mentioned, the whites-that is: collar, cuffs and hem band- are detachable. I used beautiful, crisp ivory cotton poplin, again from Truro. The cuffs are positioned with snaps, but both the collar and the hem band are slipstitched-which is what the pattern instructions advised.
Oh, meet Hades the Cat. The crowned photobomber.
Will I use this pattern again? Oh yes, I will. But I'll make sure to use sturdier fabric, one that will hold the big, detachable collar with success. Altogether I'm happy to have sewn this dress, as it gave me my first opportunity at matching such a bold pattern and it was also my very first attempt at making blouson bodice... Finally, I got a chance to make a dress with crisp, easy-to-wash, detachable cuffs/collar - and I've wanted one ever since I can remember. :)