Added Feb 14, 2010
At long last, my January project is complete! I got an amazing deal on some designer poplin, and this dress was brewing in my mind for a while until I decided to give myself an assignment for the year. Halfway through, the Coats & Clark challenge was announced. Alas, I didn’t make the deadline, but I did happen to finish right before St. Valentine’s Day. I’m not a huge fan of the holiday, but how psyched was I when my office-mate showed up with these doughnuts?! Perfect match! So I bought up a few on my way home from work & had an impromptu photo shoot.
I hand-dyed the chiffon. I hadn’t dyed fabric since summer camp tie-dye day, and I don’t really think that counts, as I never made the mixes myself. It took a lot of trial and error – I was mixing colors, trying to get the perfect hue. In the end, the color I liked best was a straight dye, not a combo. I splurged on the lining, a lovely charmeuse that feels amazing on the skin (I’m always cold!). Actually, it wasn’t much of a splurge at my local best-kept secret, especially considering the deal on the poplin.
As you can see from my muslin, the bodice was very baggy. And, I was still working out the length of the sleeve! I made a size 40, graded the hips to 42, but ended up taking in an inch on either side of the bodice (grading in from waist & underarm). Along with these adjustments, I also shortened the length of the skirt about 3" on the fashion fabric and added a third pleat to the front bodice. But it didn’t occur to me until everything was almost done that the bagginess was a result of the bodice also needing shortening. Lesson learned :) I reworked it a bit, and am happy I did. I also made tiny stitches (pickstitches?) on the collar so that the chiffon doesn’t flop down. The hem brushes the top of the knee. I think this is a good proportion for me, but I should really consult guru Gunn on that ;)
ps – This was my first BurdaStyle pattern. Not to quibble, but are all the (fantastic!) patterns on here filled with errors & inconsistencies? Maybe it’s just the editor in me, and please correct me if I’m wrong, but I’ve never heard a waistband, collar or cuff called a placket. Those serve a different function.
cotton poplin, hand-dyed silk chiffon, silk charmeuse, sew-in interfacing, zipper, self-covered button