July 26, 2010
A little bit of catching up
Pattern: Simplicity 2359
Pattern Rating: Highly recommend
Pattern Description: Dress pattern in two lengths with sleeve variations. And pockets, which automatically makes it better.
Pattern Sizing: 12-20. I took a chance on cutting the 12 and I'm glad I did!
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? No. Mine looks better. ;-)
Were the instructions easy to follow? This was my first time using one of the Project Runway patterns, and I was pleasantly surprised. My last experience with the "design your own"-ish patterns was one of those DIY Style ones from McCalls, and that one was kind of annoying. This one was very well-laid out, and the explanations of how to do different sewing techniques would make it a good starter pattern line for a beginner.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I liked the neckline--even though it plunged a little lower than I usually go for, the sweetheart-esque cut made it just modest enough so that I could get away with not raising it. (And without being too 80's about it.) I do wish the pockets had been a bit deeper, since I can't actually fit my entire hand into it.
Fabric Used: A polyester with a shantung-type weave. And also a solid poly shantung for the black portions. And a lining. Which was probably also polyester, because that's just how Joann's rolls.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I decided to take the chance of just jumping right into this one without making a muslin, because I've been doing a lot of muslining this summer (especially that ill-fated jeans muslin, which I will elaborate on shortly), and I wanted to just SEW something, darn it!! It actually fit me quite well without alterations, although if I was doing it again, I think I'd see if I could get the front bodice to flare out a bit less. I did add a skirt lining in case of fabric opacity issues, instead of just lining the bodice. And I did hand-stitch the straps closed and to the bodice, rather than topstitching it on the machine. I don't always like the way that looks, and I've found that it's really easy for the straps to get distorted with little bits of seam allowance hanging out.
Also, I originally meant to make this the maxi-dress version, but with the fabric, it just screamed 1970's bridesmaid dress when I had it laid out on the cutting table. So I chopped the skirt before I even sewed it..
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I probably won't sew it again, because I rarely sew the same dress twice. But I would recommend this to others.
Conclusion: Now I'm feeling more motivated to try out those couple of other Project Runway patterns that are in my stash!
I guess that technically, this one isn't entirely finished. I didn't sew a hook and eye on the neck yet. But I decided to just wear it to church yesterday without it anyway. After all, my church keeps the building so ridiculously air-conditioned that I knew I'd have to wear my shrug over top and no one would see that the black bit was slightly gapping.
Now comes the question I've been running into all summer....what to do with the leftovers? Apparently I overestimated how much I'd need for a maxi-dress to begin with, and then I have two or three vaguely skirt-shaped pieces left from the part I cut off the bottom of the original skirt. So I probably have at least another two yards of this print!!
I also finished my biggest challenge in the Elements series: Fire. I strung this one together last Wednesday or Thursday, just in time to wear it with my outfit for the band camp concert last Friday (featuring one of my recent thrifted tops that has actual red in it.) I'm proud of myself for actually managing to almost entirely pull this from the bead stash-- the spacer beads, the smaller beads, and those "aurora borealis" beads all came from the stash. The pendant was sort of purchased new, but not specifically for this project-- I saw it on clearance at Joann's sometime within the last couple of months and liked it. And then decided that the design was vaguely flame-like enough to work for a stylized idea of fire. The red beads in particular make me happy-- the smaller beads tend a little more towards a goldish orangeish red, and since the other ones have a little bit of blue when the light hits them in certain ways, it pretty much covers all of the fire colors.
I'd had the thought not too long ago too that it would be good for me to have a red necklace to spice up more black outfits, so this should fit the bill nicely.
Also, one last note on the BurdaStyle book coat: As of this afternoon, it is out of my hands and on its way to NYC. Which means I'm free to sew other things again, hurrah! So I will be muslin-ing tonight (hopefully the last one for awhile), and possibly plotting an order of intended projects. Now that it's almost August, I'm getting in the mood to consider some of my fall clothes. And that seemed to help me for this summer, because I finished all but three things I'd had plotted, and two of them will transition into fall rather nicely. (And, well, I didn't get to the refashions I'd hoped to do, but some of them could still happen.)