Friday, June 18, 2010

Bon Jour! Hello! Hola, etc... sundress

This is my first post. I may be the only person who ever reads this, and like Jack Handy would say: that's, OK.

I got a wild hair as summer was approaching that I wanted to sew a sundress. After not sewing for so long, I wondered if I could do it w/out loosing my patience or messing it up. What I found is that I have more patience for the journey and the process now than I did when I was 25.

I Chose this dress: Vogue 8380, view B

I chose a chambray weave linen blend with a boarder detail stripe.
Chambray: Plain weave with colored warp (vertical yarns) and white weft (horizontal fill yarns). You will find out that I'm a stickler for correct terminology, especially weave vs. fiber content and weave vs. knit. Look OUT people. Please correct me if you find something in this blog that is not correct. There are several definitions sometimes, but I'll try to put what I know here.

Instead of self tie I used white twill tape 1 1/2" width. I also cut this on the cross grain so the stripe could be at the hem. To make sure that the dress hung consistently, I cut all pieces on the cross grain.

The other thing I discovered after not sewing for a very long time is pattern sizing
. I took my measurements that told me to cut a 16. Now having lost about 30lbs over the last 2 years and wearing an RTW size 6, facing a size 16 is really offensive. But, I quickly got over that because like the impending 40 year old birthday, its' just a number.

At any rate, I didn't do a muslin, and I constructed as the package instr
uctions advised until it came to putting in the zip. I tried it on and it was HUGE. Like sad, gathered sack huge. But don't dis pare, I was able to fix that by taking about 2" out of the side seam (4" all around) before putting in the zipper. Because of all the gathers it's not obvious. Had I done a muslin, I would have realized that although I didn't need to do an FBA, I should have really just lengthened the bodice about 2." I forgot all about doing a muslin till I started reading all your blogs out there when I planned my next project.

This dress can't be worn w/a normal bra. It needs a VERY strong strapless bra to hike up the girls, otherwise they look like they are sitting at my waist. Of course the dress form looks good, she's a b. One other comment of note, the cashier at Anthropologie called me adorable while wearing this dress, biking around the Pearl on Sunday. Now, not only is that a compliment, but the kid could be my daughter- albeit my daughter that I had just shy of graduating from high school but nevertheless she was much younger than me. I was flattered, like a fool. :-) Other note is that I was returning a ridiculously expensive knit dress that I measured to knock off. Please don't tell.
.... happy weekend.


  1. Cute dress! I love that pattern- even have it in my stash- but I've never sewn it due to the bra issues. Maybe I'll get brave and dig it out and make it this summer. Great job- I love the stripe border!

  2. Welcome to blog world. Look forward to seeing more sewn garments and such.

  3. Thank you both! Just got back from China to discover someone read me. yay! I'll post more soon.

  4. Hello! Just found your blog reading patternreview, and am such a sucker for chambray, but have had the hardest time finding it here in Salt Lake City. If you don't mind, where did you find such beautiful chambray??

  5. Hi- sorry I missed your comment for so long. I kinda post stuff and then forget to look if anyone said anything. The Chambray was from The Mill End Store in Portland, OR. I haven't gotten into buying fabric on line yet. I am really blessed to live by this store that carries beautiful fabrics at two locations. I was looking for a similar one in blue for a dress for my sister and didn't find anything though. So I feel your pain. Thanks for reading!