Monday, October 13, 2008

Done! (And in time!)

If you read SewRetro, this is probably old news to you. But to the rest of you, I'm excited to announce that I finished my Family Picture Dress in plenty of time. In fact, I wore it to work last Thursday.
( I have no idea why my face looks like that.)

(It would seem that I wisely chopped my head off in this shot.)

Construction Details (I suspect some of you will be bored to tears by this):

Bodice: I know it was a McCalls' pattern, but I can't find it on their site. I'll try to find the number later, when I'm at home.

Skirt: New Look/Simplicity 6824

Buttons: Vintage, from my button jar. They're hard to see, but they're white, with a ring of red around the outside. They were actually sitting out next to the button jar, for reasons I'm don't understand. I took it as a sign from above, though, because they're absolutely perfect on this dress.

Modifications: The original bodice was for a full shirt dress, with buttons all the way down. Because the skirt I selected was not like that, I inserted a zipper in the side seam so that I could actually get in and out of the dress (what a novel idea, no?).

Notes: The collar and facing draft on this bodice absolutely suck. There's no better word for it. I ended up needing Mom's help on this; quite a bit more than I anticipated. (Someday, I am going to make a dress all by myself, damn it!) I got the collar on with little trouble, but the I simply could not get the facing on right. No matter what I did, I always ended up with puckers on the actual dress. I finally gave up and begged Mom to sew it on for me. I did feel much better when she was done, though, because she couldn't get it on properly, either. In the end, there are still some puckers on the seam line along the collar, but the collar itself seems to hide most of them. Since I don't anticipate walking around with a popped collar, I don't anticipate that many people will notice.

To add insult to injury, I couldn't get the buttonholer to work for me, either. I spent 45 minutes attempting to sew one buttonhole. Again, I begged Mom in frustration. Of course, she sat down and whipped them all up in five minutes.

Overall: Despite my troubles, I'm absolutely thrilled with how this dress turned out. It fits like a glove. Really. If I gain five pounds, this dress will not fit. I opted to wear a "slimmer" under the dress. I can wear it without, but I would be spending most of the day trying to remember to "suck it in". The slimmer holds me in just enough that everything fits better. While I love the narrow-waisted look of the 50s, I'd never given much thought to the undergarments that must have been necessary.

This was my first foray into mixing and matching patterns. I was nervous, but need not have been. Everything went together easily and I ended up with exactly what I wanted.

Ironic Twist: I busted ass to get this dress finished in time, so I could wear it for our pictures on Saturday. At the last minute, Ryan had to work Saturday. Our pictures got bumped to next Saturday. So the rush wasn't strictly necessary.

On the bright side, I now have time to sew Leah's coordinating dress! (Which is having it's own set of problems, but I'll detail those in another post.)