Sunday, October 5, 2014

Why Sew a Summer Dress in October?

After a glorious September, the weather is finally cooling in Chicago.  Last weekend my husband was backpacking in Michigan and I created this Spring dress.

 I purchased this floral cotton voile last December in New York.  The bolt indicated the fabric was imported from France. The fabric is unique because (1) the full color print appears on both sides rather than just on the right side, (2) I could not find a discernible repeat to the print so the fabric is artistic and interesting, and (3) there are numerous dye shades of pinks, fuchsias, and greens which adds to the print's complexity.  

Why did I sew a dress now that I won't be able to wear until March or April 2015?  Spring appears out of nowhere in Chicago, and I often don't sew garments for this short season.  If I wait until next year, I will probably be occupied with work or a winter project, and the dress would not be sewn.  Now I am prepared for Spring with a dress I love.  My interest in specific projects ebbs and flows, and I took advantage of my current enthusiasm for this design and fabric.

The design is #116 from the 8/2014 issue of Burda Style.  There are only four pattern pieces, no zipper or closure is needed, and the dress can be sewn in an afternoon.  The muslin work is interesting:
Garment front has a small amount of fullness
Back bodice does not reach waist
Below I pinned the fullness rather than inserting elastic into the muslin.
Skirt back reaches to waist and is fuller than skirt front
Once the back fullness is pinned in place, the look of the front is smooth but not fully fitted like a sheath dress.
The only fit issues are that the bust dart is low and perhaps the bodice length is a little long.  I have these fit issues on every darted garment I sew.

Yellow pin shows bust center; horizontal bust dart could be 3/4" higher
Below I shortened the bodice front and back above the bust dart by 3/4".  This raises the bust dart and eliminates a little extra length. 

By the way, I like to use fusible interfacing tapes from Emma Seabrooke rather than stay-stitching to control the shape of necklines and armholes.  I do stitch these areas directionally though. 

1/2" fusible tape applied to armholes, shoulder seams, and necklines of front and back
The finished dress:
Burda 116 8/2014 front
Burda 116 8/2014 side view
Burda 116 8/2014 back view

1 comment:

  1. Ann,
    Thank you for sharing this project with us.
    Not normally keen on patterned fabric,but this is beautiful! I have recently started using Burda patterns and this one is wonderful for summertime. I hope that you share a picture of you wearing it when the weather is good.