I’ve never seen you looking so lovely as you did tonight,
I’ve never seen you shine so bright,
I’ve never seen so many men ask you if you wanted to dance,
They’re looking for a little romance, given half a chance…
Believe you me, in the bleak, grey light of a winter morning (when these photos were taken) there were no invitations to do the pasodoble. ‘I’ve got to leave in ten minutes,’ my boyfriend mumbled as he peered into the viewfinder.
So, what do you reckon? The V1183 is finished! Mum and my boyfriend have both repeatedly asked me if I’m happy with the dress. This means either
a) they think something is wrong with it, but are too scared to say so
b) they’re bracing themselves for the fall out if I’m not happy.
But, I’m happy. I really am. After a first attempt, a muslin (toile, Karen, toile!) I finally gathered the confidence to cut into the red cashmere, and doesn’t it work up a dream? I still love it and have enough left over for a make of something else. All of that top stitching and edge stitching gives a brilliant finish.
This pattern is rated ‘Easy’ and I’ve read other Sewists exclaim over how simple this is to put together. Erm….. Not for me. Because of the clean silhouette, you want a really good fit. Not easy straight out of the packet for most of us. It’s fully lined – a first for me on a dress – and it was my first attempt at a centred lapped hand-picked zipper:
Can you spot the deliberate mistake?
As you can see, I couldn’t quite get the midriff sections to meet squarely at the zipper. So what? There are approximately one million different seams on this dress that I did get to match up accurately, so I’m not going to beat myself up. I tried, I failed, move on.
Other thoughts on this dress?
- Make a toile. Definitely make a toile.
- I’ve been peering at other versions of this dress, and I suspect that deep midriff section is a challenge for more people than me. (If you recall, I had to shave some of the depth off, following your wonderful suggestions.) A design flaw? Wash your mouth out, Karen!
- Like every other Sewist on the planet, I found that the overlapping front bodice sections needed sewing closed. Otherwise, the rest of the world would be tortured by a very good view of my underwear. On which point:
- Wear a good bra!
On to other matters.
Look at this gorgeous lining:
And this sumptuous shot:
What the *@$*!
Learn from my mistakes. Do NOT have a seam ripper on the sofa next to you when you’re all relaxed and doing some hand sewing in front of the telly. As I inserted my zipper, the dress lining caught on the seam ripper. I didn’t notice, until something (the tug of a blade tearing through fabric?) made me look up and a neat little hole had been created in my lining. Weep? No, I didn’t actually. But, hell’s teeth!
Inspecting the nail varnish – very important task
I’m so proud of everything I’ve achieved on this dress, but it taught me that I’m nearing the limits of what I can manage alone. I need a teacher. So on the back of the V1183, I’ve signed up for a Clothes Making course at Morley College starting in January. I. Can. Not. Wait. We each have to take a pattern to work on during the evening lessons. I think I need something that’s going to make me try new techniques, challenge me and need a toile. Any suggestions? I have a totally open (empty?) mind!