Friday, October 7, 2011

Simplicity 2403 (finally!)

Between Mitch's crazy schedule and Salt Lakes' crazy weather (It SNOWED yesterday!) I'm afraid my pictures are indoor with flash, but it was that or nothing, and I really wanted y'all to see this dress.
The pattern is Simplicity 2403, which is a Project Runway shirtdress with several sleeve and neckline options. Unfortunately it is now OOP, which is really too bad, as it is a pretty darn awesome pattern. I'll definitely be using it again. There is this silk twill in my stash... But I digress.
The changes I made were primarily for fit. I did an 1 3/4 inch FBA (The details of that are here.), 1/4 inch broad back adjustment and added 1/2 inch to the back waist width. I also raised the waistline in back 1/2 inch. I think this is the most work I've ever done in altering a pattern. I even made 2 muslins! And I'm pretty happy with the fit, although the pictures are showing me a few places that I need to refine.
There is a teeny bit of pooling above the back waist, so I think I need to take off a little from the top of the skirt. I do like the way the back bodice lies. Sorry my hair is covering all the action back there! You can see a dress form picture here.
The other changes I made to the pattern were to line the skirt, change the back gathers to pleats and move the fullness to the sides. I used an invisible zipper, rather than a lapped zip in the side seam. I also hemmed it a little longer than the pattern called for. I was going for a below the knee length, which I think fits a bit better with the Med Men sort of aesthetic. The pattern calls for interfacing in the collar, stand, bands and waistband. I used Pam's new Shirt Crisp for the collar and stand. I totally love it. It seems very stiff while working with it, but it sews beautifully without bulk, gives a perfect amount of body while still remaining flexible. For the bands, I considered not interfacing them at all, but the bodice fabric is quite thin and I was worried that two layers wouldn't support the buttonholes well. I ended up using Pro-Sheer Elegance there and I like the teeny bit of structure it adds without making it stiff. For the waistband, I wanted more stability. I was really happy with the way the two layers of Pro-Weft worked in Mitch's pants, but for this dress, I simply interfaced both the waistband and the facing with Pro-Weft. I think it's perfect.
Here is the skirt lining. It is a rayon satin from the stash that is just yummy. The dress fabrics are cotton, calico broadcloth for the bodice and lightweight sateen for the skirt. Both are from Fabric Mart. The skirt fabric was part of a mystery bundle that I ordered when I ordered the calico. I couldn't believe how perfectly they matched. I really think the folks at Fabric Mart tailor the mystery bundle that they send to the fabrics you've purchased. This isn't the first time that my bundle has contained fabrics that coordinate with my order.
Here is the side zipper from the inside. I really wasn't sure how to attach the lining to it without handsewing, so I just slipstitched it down. It sure looks nice from the inside.
From the outside, it also looks darn nice. It also took four tries. It really just didn't want to line up, then when I actually got it aligned I had twisted the zipper. Yes, I said a swear word.
And for the finishing touch, I made a belt! How fun is that?! I used a belt making kit from A Fashionable Stitch, and Sunni's wonderful tutorials. It was super fun and not at all difficult. I think it's the perfect addition to this dress and I will definitely be making more.

21 comments:

  1. Sooo pretty! I love the colors and the classic style on you. A winner!

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  2. Very cute! Thanks for all of the detail.

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  3. This is so gorgeous! I love, love, love, the beautiful pretty colours. You look very lovely indeed in this dress. I have this pattern and have made it twice so I know how much work is involved - yours looks beautifully constructed.

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  4. I really love this dress The two-fabric style is great and the colors are ones you don't see too often, which is a shame.

    I think you've done really well with the fit.

    http://sewingandso.blogspot.com/ has been making a series of two-fabrics dresses lately.

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  5. It's just beautiful. I love the mixing of fabrics which make it look more like a top/skirt. And slipstiching the lining to the zipper is good practice for the terror I know you're procrastinating.

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  6. I have this pattern and keep intending to make it - your version is great. I echo your comment on making belts, fun and not difficult, especially now that the supplies are available. (used to be very hard to find in stores)

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  7. The fit you got on this is so amazing---there may be a few kinks, but seriously, you do not get that look in a woven off the rack. Go you!

    We haven't had snow here yet, but we're only a few degrees away...

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  8. Adorable dress; I too found making a muslin does really help with fitting - I'd say yours is perfect and very complementary to your knock out figure. Have fun at Sew Summit this weekend!!! I hear it is snowing in the Sierras too!

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  9. Gorgeous and what an awesome fit...

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  10. Great job on this dress. Your two muslins and many extra efforts paid off.

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  11. The dress turned out great! It looks like an excellent fit. I love the belt, too.

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  12. Great looking dress. Thank you for pointing me to the belt tutorial and supplies. I see several belts in my future.

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  13. The belt making kit is a great idea. Your dress looks great. SLC weather is a big change for you, isn't it? We don't usually get snow before November 1. I hope we're not jinxed because I said that.

    And if you heard the expletives that fall out of me when things go wrong, you'd blush. Thankfully, things don't usually go that wrong. And as I cheerfully tell the family, at least I don't throw things!

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  14. You look wonderful in this dress, a combination of demure and sultry. Love the lining and that terrific belt as well. Nice, too, to hear that my favorite store, Fabric Mart, did a good job with your grab bag.

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  15. Great dress. Thanks for the detailed review.

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  16. That is so cool and cute! I love 2-tone dresses and I totally covet this one! And the inside is as well done as the outside, I'm envious^^

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  17. A great silhouette on you - I hope you enjoy your dress, so pretty and feminine.

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  18. Nice sewing, Katie. Looks like you conquered the fit. We learn something with every garment we make. You are fearless, and dive right in. I'm glad to see a covered belt. What is old is new again. Guess that doesn't apply to our bodies though!

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  19. You look amazing in this dress, all the hard work was worth it!

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  20. love the dress. I need to finish mine! I am making this dress in a seersucker fabric. I am so glad to see it done. it gets me inspired. I have so many things I am sewing at the moment and more to come with Christmas around the corner. My things seem to get put on the back burner.

    You did a great job!

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  21. You look amazing in this dress! Fantastic fit! I am so glad I have this pattern in my stash. Someday I will put one together too, keeping your beautiful version in mind.

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