Thursday, February 13, 2014

Early Easter Frock


Exciting news! After 6 years of sewing from dress patterns, I have finally figured out what "understitch" means. For years, I have been trying to decipher the vague instructions and obscure picture.
Up until now, I have just topstitched during that step of the construction project. But, while assembling the newest frock for my niece, the instructions magically made sense. I couldn't believe that I had been confused about something so simple for all of this time! Have you ever had a sewing "aha" moment?
Anyway, that tremendous discovery was the only good thing about constructing this dress. "Fast & Easy" my foot.
Selecting fabric became a nightmare when I realized that I only had about a yard of the green contrast. Since the skirt trim is cut on the bias, I didn't have enough for the long tie straps that the pattern calls for on the back of the dress. But, with a 16" zipper closure on the back, the tie seemed redundant. So, I say "phooey" to that.
If I had followed the instructions, there would be almost no exposed seams on the inside of the dress. Since I have a serger, that part of the construction design just ends up being more work, and more fabric, for me. In the future, I will alter the pattern pieces in the following ways:

  • No tie backs (redundant)
  • No sleeve lining (skipped it this time because it seems silly to have lined cap-like sleeves)
  • Cut the trim length in half and do a regular hem

This project took about 5 or 6 hours from cutting to completion, which is not "fast" for me. I like to finish dresses within about 3 hours or so. And, having to slipstitch the lining to the seams is for chumps. Unfortunately, I have yet to master the skill it takes to perfectly measure and fold so that the lining is flush enough with the seam to just topstitch.

On the other hand, I just love the neckline on this dress, and the way the skirt is full and twirly pleases me. I will probably make this again.

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