Hope you all managed to enjoy Christmas (if you celebrate) as you best you could in these current circumstances. I know this year in particular would have been harder than most for some people, especially here in the UK where heavy restrictions were in place limiting movement and meeting other people. We are fortunate to live in an area of the country where restrictions are not so tough and we had a nice time. This will probably be my last post of the year and I wanted to share a dress that I made “for Christmas” although I did not wear this on Christmas day. For Christmas day I opted for my faux leather trousers and a top, and I wore this dress out for an afternoon tea a couple of days before Christmas. No matter, I love how this dress turned out and I think it’s a dress that is very easy to wear all year round.
Let’s start with the fabric. I rarely succumb to the lure of designer prints, but couldn’t resist this abstract printed viscose crepe in this rich shade of bordeaux by Eglantine and Zoe. I purchased my fabric from Lamazi Fabrics. Turns out the print is actually eucalyptus leaves, with a further scattering of “pebbles” in shades of ochre and off white. The quality of the viscose crepe is probably one of the nicest I have worked with: substantial, heavy and with amazing drape and movement: I hope my photos reflect that! And I think my choice of pattern pairs well with the fabric.
Speaking of patterns, I actually combined three different patterns to achieve this look. I wanted something very easy fitting without being completely shapeless. I first made New Look 6160 6 years ago, and have been meaning to re-visit it ever since! This is one of those pattern where you really have to look beyond the envelope illustration/ styling! I paired the bodice from that pattern with the tiered skirt portion of McCalls 7948, which I have made once before. This time I played with the proportions of the volume of gathering, (I made the first tier 1.5 times wider than the bodice waistline and the second tier 1.5 times wider than the length of the first tier), largely because of fabric limitations. I had 3 metres of this fabric to play with, and ended up piecing in some sections in to the lower tier. But it all worked out well and I am very happy with it. Finally, I wanted to add in some longer length sleeves with some puff at the sleeve heads and some volume. I used the sleeves from McCalls 8040 which I have made up before. Overall: love how this turned out.
- Did a 5/8ths inch FBA on the bodice of the dress, and closed and rotated the bust dart to form shoulder gathers
- Added 0.5 inches to the side seams from the waist up to the bust and took 3/8ths inch for the bodice side seam allowances
- Did a 0.5 inch forward shoulder adjustment to the yoke back/ yoke front
- Used two yoke fronts/ yoke backs and the burrito method for a clean finish inside at the neck/ shoulder area
- Added 2 inches to the length of the sleeves
- Added 1 inch to the hem of the lower ruffle of the skirt
- I made the first tier of the skirt 1.5 times wider than the bodice waistline, and the second tier 1.5 times wider than the length of the first tier
- I did have to piece the lower ruffle due to fabric limitations. I used 1.25 inches for the hem
I hope you all enjoy peace, health and happiness in the new year. Here’s hoping that 2021 brings new hope and a return to normality across the globe. See you soon!