The tale of three shirtdresses, merged into one: the finale! It was one of those projects that unexpectedly took forever. This dress started as a McCall's 6696 for Christmas.
After tracing the pattern I wanted some more drama, and drama is exactly what I got. In more ways than one, ha!
In an earlier post I described how I selected the bodice of Burda 5/2010 #137, a self drafted 3/4 circle skirt and the sleeves of said M6696.
All three elements came with their own set of troubles. Sigh.
I made a muslin for the bodice and made adjustments for forward shoulders, a small FBA, and added an inch to the indecently low neckline. Because of the altered shoulders I needed to adjust the collar and lapels as well. They were constructed in a rather unusual way:
The bodice had a cut-on facing in the front, but no facing for the back neckline was included so I drafted one.
On the left you can see the facing, and the collar during construction.
Due to shortage of fabric I had to redraft the skirt to a half circle skirt. On the front I added extra width for the cut-on button band and facings, in line with the bodice facings.
After cutting the sleeves I had some doubts. Cruella de Vil vibes?
I went looking for pictures all over the internet but, other than the envelope pictures, no one seemed to have to used the long sleeves with pointed cuffs of M6696.
A quick poll on Instagram showed most of the reactions were in favour of the cuffs. Democratic decision made (and not regretted!).
So....Bodice? Check! Sleeves? Check! Skirt? Check! Construction time!
This happy dance was days later, after testing buttonholes, sewing eleven of them, using a chalk marker to get the hem straight and handstitching four metres of hem, finished with satin bias tape.
Will I make this dress again? Probably yes. After all the work put into fitting this pattern mix it deserves a remake. I imagine a sleeveless summer dress in bright floral fabric or white linen.
What will I change? Looking at the pictures I think the curved waistline on the bodice will look better if it's straightened out. And I will shorten the vertical darts. In fact I will revisit the darts on this one. Odd how revealing pictures can be, compared to what you see in the mirror. Especially when working with black fabric and artificial lights. But it's nothing that can't be fixed!
Now is the glass half full or half empty? In other words, did I finish my Christmas dress ridiculously late or marvelously early? At least there's one item less on my December 2015 to do list!
Now that the Christmas leftover drinks are out I'd like to thank the Empress of the 1000 Shirtdresses for hosting an inspiring challenge and for pushing back the deadline so many times that even the slowest of shirtdress sewists could finish in time.
Thanks, Mary. Cheers!