Unexpected Summer Dress

So this contest happened and I ended up sewing this dress for it…

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And I really wasn’t planning on making a dress right now.  I have some separates to make that I actually need way more. I guess some interruptions are worth it, right? This one is MG2716.  I tested the pattern back in December and said then that I was going to make another one out of a fabric that’s more me.  I bought a border print from the Handcrafted Indigo line.  Definitely my kind of print.  I even bought a coordinating print to make a non matchy yet still matching (if that makes any sense) dress or peplum top for E. I ran out of time for that one.

In December, I’d tested the pattern with sleeves.  Farrah added the racerback option afterwards but it was my favorite so that’s what I went for here.  I made the same size as last time and I can’t even remember what size that is.  I was all set to mess around with the dart to get it in the right spot when I thought to compare my test bodice with the new one.  Yep.  Different darts.  I tried to fit it with the paper but that didn’t quite work.  In the end, I kept the darts as is.  I wanted to leave the print intact in the center and moving the darts inward would have messed with it. So those waist darts aren’t in the perfect spot.

I was in a hurry so I didn’t take the time to do a muslin. If I had made one, I would have seen that I needed a bit of a dart at the armscye.  There’s a bit of looseness there that you can see sometimes shows my bra.

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(Don’t be fooled.  A regular bra won’t work with the racerback.  The one I’m wearing is convertible and I moved the straps as close to the center as possible in the back.) In all fairness, neither I nor M noticed that my bra sometimes shows so it must be in part because of the way I was moving for the pictures. You don’t see it when I stand normally.  I also put on a ready-to-wear sleeveless top the other day and had the same looseness at the armscye.  It just never registered.  I know my dress fits as well as RTW but I suppose that’s what happens when you start sewing for yourself.  At some point, RTW fit just isn’t good enough anymore.

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Still love that skirt!  Pleats have never been friendly to me but somehow, these work.  I think they worked better in that heavier fabric from the test (it was home dec weight whereas this is quilting cotton).  Here, they puff up a tiny bit.

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I know, I know, I’m being nitpicky.  But hey, ultimately, this dress makes me feel pretty so it will get worn a lot this Summer.  The fabric is easy care and the style is very comfortable. I love a dress that’s easy to live in but makes me feel put together and this one is just right! Of course, now, I have no desire to get back to my separates. I just want more pretty dresses!

Creative mommy at home to two wonderful little girls, trying to juggle family, sewing, exercise, family, knitting, photography, and did I mention family?

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Posted in Sewing
3 comments on “Unexpected Summer Dress
  1. Charity says:

    That fabric is really pretty! I like how it looks with this style of dress too. It’s good to know that the pleats sat better with a heavier fabric… I love pleats but don’t like them on me, so I think I’ll try them in some different fabrics!

    • Yes! I was very surprised during testing because pleats usually give me very wide hips. But they ended up actually working really well. The fabric I used for testing was canvas so it had both structure and weight. I think the weight of the fabric pulled down on the skirt just enough to keep the pleats sleek. I’m sure the pattern played its part as well. The pleating pattern is different than what I’ve seen elsewhere. The box pleats on the side go over the side seam so that the pockets are hidden inside the pleat. You’re also supposed to pleat at a slight angle. That creates a curve and it might help the pleats open up more flat on the hips. Maybe?

  2. […]  I frequently have issues with too much fabric at the upper chest (see Peony, Mesa, even my latest Mingo and Grace dress though that one isn’t as bad and probably doesn’t need as much of an adjustment). And […]

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