Fabric: wool twill/tweed in black, white, pink, mauve, magenta. lining in silk marc jacobs heart print.
Pattern: Vogue 8511
Notions: 22″ zipper
Time to Complete: 8 hours
First Worn: January 24, 2012
Wear Again: Yes
Total Price: ~$75
Challenge Theme: “Made This Look”
i first spotted this photo on miss celie’s pants, when cidell posted what she called a “parisienne” dress from a BWOF pattern. i saved the image immediately, knowing that i would come back to it one day when i was in the mood for something beyond my usual routine of cotton blouses.
“made this look” gave me several opportunities on that front–it’s january, so a cotton dress isn’t really as much fun as it usually is, to begin with. but mostly this theme was a perfect chance to take a card off of my inspiration board and turn it into something real.
something wonderful happened while i was making this dress. i hit what can only be called “the zone”: that perfect chance when your skills and your image of your finished project are completely in sync. i don’t usually say that things go together “like a dream” but there is no other word to describe how easily and perfectly the pieces on this garment came together.
i started with my moulage and learned how to adjust a princess seam using a regular darted bodice. this was huge for me–i often avoid a princess seam because, since i need to flatten them so much, i find them even more difficult to fit than a regular darted bodice. even more importantly than that, however, i sat and took the time to do things properly. the seam allowances on the wool are trimmed and catch-stitched down for a clean, flat look on the bodice. the waist stay is pick-stitched by hand to the lining. the lining is hand-understitched to the bodice seam allowance. the hem is hand-stitched and trimmed with lace. the zipper is hand-picked.
i’m not going to lie. a lot of procedural reruns were watched in the making of this dress. but the end result was worth it and, best of all, didn’t delay my finished product.
Dresses have lined, princess seamed bodice, pleated skirt front, darts in skirt back and back zipper closure, length is 1″ below mid-knee. A: sleeveless. B: three-quarter length sleeves.
i re-sized using my moulage, but my base pattern was the 6-8-10-12 package.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
yes. i got exactly the look i was going for.
Were the instructions easy to follow?
i did not use the instructions.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
i always like a boatneck, and i like the 3/4 or “bracelet length” sleeves. knowing that i wanted to do this in wool, i thought the pleats would give a nice sense of volume without being too much.
wool tweed from paron’s annex in NYC
silk marc jacobs print lining from mood fabrics in NYC
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
a great wardrobe staple. maybe don’t need more than one, but one well-executed will be a classic for as long as it fits.