This dress pattern from Grainline Studio is EFFING awesome. I dont understand why its only got two handful of dresses made from it (okay, i get that not everyone is such a show off like me, but still!), because seriously, everyone needs to make one!!
First of all, Jen is a pattern genius. Its the first time I forked over $5 dollars for a pattern, but its so, so, so worth it. I cut out the pattern with my actual size, and it fits perfectly without alteration, which rarely happens. It doesnt feel too tight but sits on my body securely – i dont need to pull the strapless dress up. I didnt do my usual 91% shrink to account for height this time, but it still came out fitting very nicely. The dress has a cut that I’ve not seen from other patterns before, so its actually a little daunting to “hack” the pattern from a basic (cheaper) pattern (I know i know, i should and want to support independent pattern makers, but my cheap side gets the better of me every time). The way the bust line curves down from the front center is just so flattering for any figure, not to mention all the color blocking that fitted together nicely.
When I first cut out the pattern, I realized there were gazillions of pieces to cut out (okay, i exaggerate, really there were only 43 pieces, i skipped the interface). But it was really easy to figure out which piece goes where, so i never felt overwhelmed. Things came together without a hitch, and I followed her very clear instructions for most of the steps. I love that when the dress is done, every single seam is enclosed – it looks as nice on the inside as it looks on the outside. There were a step that I didnt follow, thinking – huh, why does she want me to hand sew the two lining piece together? meh, i’ll machine stitch it together. Only to realize later that had I hand sewn the two skirt lining pieces together, future hemming would be easily doable. Dont question the genius.
Most fabrics came from my stash because I was having trouble and limited time to find the fabric i really wanted. I managed to salvage some purple linen from a project a friend started but abandoned. White fabric and skirt lining is just cotton muslin. Tulip fabric is left over from this dress. I decided to copy Jen and bought sturdy cotton canvas for the bodice lining, which is a very good idea as it holds the boning well.
Talking about boning, I bought mine from Hancock, because I was so excited about finishing the project and didnt want to wait for ebay sellers to ship. But at Hancock, you pay $4 a yard ($2.5 after discount), from ebay, you get get 12 yards for 8 dollars (thats $0.67 a yard)! I have to remind myself to plan better in the future so i dont spend so much on sewing supplies! Also, is my husband the only seamstress-hubby that make dirty jokes whenever you mention that you need some boning? Tell me that I am not alone.
(on a related note, I am putting off making of the vogue color block pattern for a while. I bought the pattern and realized there is no easy way to shorten the dress for petites – they dont have those petite folds. oops. need to think about how to shorten that pattern for a while. )
pps. sorry for all the pictures of me just working it :P i love the dress too much.