Feed on

I made a new dress today – it didn’t pan out quite as well as one might have hoped, and it is, of course, my fault, as I did a piss-poor job of matching fabric to pattern design.

I’d bought this fabric with an eye to using it with McCall’s M5974, which is a pattern for a mock-wrap dress, or which can be made as a round-necked dress without the wraparound sash. I chose to make it as a hybrid of the two options. I used the wraparound bodice but omitted the sash. I am 100% satisfied with the pattern, with another minor modification.

The pattern’s back section is cut in two panels, and is shaped by the center back and side seams. Unfortunately, it it is not very fitted in comparison with the very structured front of the dress and hung quite regrettably between my shoulder blades and buttocks, so I ended up tracing a pair of French darts in to give it a little better waistline definition.

Because the back is drafted in two panels, and there is quite a bit of flare to the skirt, there was no practical way to make the large-scale zig-zag print match up in any satisfactory fashion at the top half of the back section of the dress. See below:
Please forgive me the transgressions in print matching
Seriously, to a longtime and reasonably conscientious seamstress, this is highly embarrassing. That looks like all kinds of heck, and I will be the first to admit it. Poor choice of fabric for this particular kind of design.

Oh well, you live and learn.

The front of the dress is pretty decent, though:

Plus, the shape is perfect for my shape, and that’s the main object here. I have another piece of fabric earmarked for this same pattern, and I think it will play a whole lot nicer with this particular design.

In all future iterations of this pattern, the French darts will be with it from the start. I have traced them on to the back section of the pattern, and henceforth that’s how it will be made.

The pattern instructions suggested to omit the back zipper if possible, and I found it very, very possible to omit it. With the very floppy, very stretchy Jersey knit that I used, a zipper would have been superfluous to say the least.

There was no provision for a neckline facing. The instructions suggested simply folding the neckline inward and stitching, but I prefer to face it with seam lace. I think this is a neater, stronger, and more attractive finish. Plus, I had a bit of lace that was such an ideal match to the color of the print!

As some of you who look at my Flickr sidebar may have seen, I used a bit of the scrap from this dress to make an asymmetrical tank top. I actually put the tank top together before I put the dress together because I am contrary like that. I’ve already used this top several times since assembly.


And so here’s a hypothetical outfit featuring said tank top, a bolero made out of scrap fabric from a trouser project, and a lace skirt I bought at a local thrift shop. This outfit is practically free, since it is composed of leftovers and rejects.
Yay for lo-budget fashion!

Leave a Reply