Sunday, October 12, 2014

Homecoming Dance and McCall's 6646


The last couple of days were filled with trying to put together a dress for my oldest daughter's homecoming dance.  I actually wanted to start the project weeks ago, but as normal it is going to be a last minute decision to either go or what's in the lineup for what to wear.  I also know that we are going to bump heads on this subject, but this year,,, I actually won.  I made my mind up and came to a resolve within myself that I would not argue or fuss about her apparel choices, I would just make whatever she said she wanted.

Last month I tried so hard to get her to let me make her dress or even let my buy a dress for her, but she was undecided about going, but I noticed everyday she would come in from school talking about homecoming and sharing with her friends what she wanted to wear.  I could over hear all types of colors and this one pair of shoes she was trying to fit into her agenda.  I moved around the house and continued on as if I were oblivious to her schemes.

Well, I decided to go to Joann's fabric store for some simple supplies (zipper, buttons, pellon, etc.).  Once she got inside the fabric store, her eyes lit up and her wheels were turning.  When I go to the fabric store, I like to take a look around and see all the beautiful fabric.  Maybe sit down and look through the pattern books for inspiration.  So, that means that I will be there for a minute.  Out of all the time that I have been sewing, my oldest daughter was never interested in going with me to a fabric store or even looking at raw fabric.  She's one of those girls that likes things ready to go, but this day was different for her.  She was like a kid in a candy store.  When she found her fabric, she instantly picked it up and wouldn't put it down.  Then she told me she needed a pattern.

The pattern that she chose, I had already suggested it to her a few weeks back, but she couldn't see where I was going with it and lost interest just as fast as I put it in from of her.  McCall's 6646 had a really cute envelope photo that appealed to both of us until she decided she didn't want any straps.
For me, this dress was perfect for a party, so here is the big reveal and review.

Jessica Simpson Justinah Gladiator Sandal available Here and Here.
The Review
Pattern Description:  Lined dresses have close-fitting, boned bodice variations with or without straps, circular, short, double or long tiered skirt, back zipper, purchased trims and petticoat

Pattern Sizing: B5(8-10-12-14-16)

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Not really.  I believe I found a discrepancy with the style that I chose.  I am still unsure about it, but my pattern called for 2 skirt front pieces to be cut, looking at the illustrations and thinking about it, it didn't make sense to go with 2 complete pieces unless you were trying to go completely 50s or 60s with a very wide skirt.  That was not the look that I was going for. 

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I didn't like this pattern without the straps.  I think the straps are what makes this dress complete.  I also found that the pattern only called for boning in the back of the bodice, so I had to take the whole dress apart to add the front boning to the bodice.

Fabric Used: Satin and Charmeuse.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I ended up cutting 1" away from all bodice seams.  The pattern sizing was way too big.  I cut 1/2" from both sides to make it equal all the way around.  I left the skirt as it was and used gathers (ease) to assemble it to the bodice.  I also installed an invisible zipper which gave it a clean finish in the back.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I would love to try this dress again.  If I had to do it again, at least I would know which direction to go (not using the instructions is a start).  

Conclusion:  Overall, this is a good pattern for young adults, teens, and pre-teens if there is ever a formal occasion and a question of what to pick.  It can be made with just about any type of formal fabric,,, Satin, Shantung, Lace, Sateen, Charmeuse, Taffeta,etc.  My daughter chose the Charmeuse and I chose the Satin.  I used a nice weight Satin for the bodice to help with the structure of the sweetheart top.  I love the way the soft Charmeuse swayed with the slightest blow of wind.  A stiffer fabric would have made the skirt stand out more and not move as much, but that too would be a personal taste thing.  The envelope cover is a Satin and taffeta lace combo which I thought was what turned my daughter on to this pattern.  She was very satisfied with her results and didn't want me to make a tulle slip because the drape of the Charmeuse was what she wanted for this dress.  Once I was done I could see her vision.

If you intend to make this dress be sure to measure all the pieces first.  Do any necessary grading before you cut.  I also suggest that you use boning in the front whether you use straps or not.  Even though I got my pattern last year there still may be some issues that have gone unnoticed with this pattern.

Well, I am off to start another project and I hope you enjoyed today's post. 
Until next time,

Lots of Love

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Vogue 8871 In Black And White


I have been seeing the Little Black dress (LBD) popping up everywhere and I have been wanting me one with an edge.  Quite naturally, I am not fit enough for a "Body Con" dress, but I did find something that I could make work for me.  Everyday I would log online and see celebrities with their fit bodies in those tight leather dresses and I was so "green".  The fact that I couldn't wear a tight fitted dress was not a determining factor because I had envisioned my dress with little touches of leather and not all leather.

Here are a few inspiring celeb looks that caught my attention.
Rihanna is so daring and racey with her fashion sense.  I wouldn't wear this outfit now, but it appeals to the younger side of me as does most of her styling trends..
I will be one of the first to admit that Angelina has a flare for the rugged classy edge.  Both of these dresses make me swoon, but they still aren't on the top of my must have list.
Here are the dresses that suit my take on leather.  I am not particular about the whole dress being in leather, but the style of dress make sense to me and my body.  Which one do I like the most....All of them.  So, keeping this type of dress in mind I began my search for the pattern that would lead me to a fulfilled leather dream.

Vogue 8871 was my pattern of choice.  I could see clean lines and a very flared skirt with this pattern.
I had gotten this pattern when it first came out because I thought the envelope dress was extremely exciting and challenging.  As I kept tossing the concept around in my head, I saw a solid colored dress and decided to strike the zig-zag look out the door.  I had a piece of ivory colored ponte knit that was begging me to make something with it and I also had 1 yard of leather like fabric that was intended to be a skirt that just jumped on the table and screamed,,,"Me Next!!"  So, the task was on to go with a inverted LBD and make a LBWD (Little Black and White Dress)..hehehe.

So, here's my solution to my leather fetish.
I will mention this because it was too funny,,,keep an eye on the ducks...
As I was taking pictures the ducks got closer and closer.  There were 2 adults and 6 babies.  I was almost scared to continue because I know them momma ducks get a little excited about their babies, but they really wanted to smile for the camera.

The Review
Pattern Description: 
Close-fitting, flared, pullover dress has seam detail and narrow hem.
Pattern Sizing:
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, this pattern has staying power.j

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? My favorite was that there were only 5 pieces.  I added the neck binding myself.

Fabric Used: Medium weight Ponte Knit and leather like knit.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I didn't make any adjustments to this pattern other than a neck binding.  

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? yes and yes

Conclusion:  If this pattern is not a part of your collection, get it.  I like the short version and I am definately going back for a longer version.  This pattern is from the very easy Vogue collection and I think that a beginner would be able to study this pattern and come up with a very professional looking dress.  It is very versatile with the jersey fabric list.  The heavier the fabric the less swing you will get from the skirt, the lighter weight fabrics will give more swing to the skirt.  I also think that this could be completely made out of the leather like knit that I used (will need a lining for comfort).  The pattern suggests using Jersey and Ponte knit.  I do too.  I am thinking of using a jersey for my long skirt version because the swing in this dress is awesome.  It's also well suited for all body types, which makes this pattern stand out as one of my favorites for longevity and versatility.

I hope you enjoyed today's post, Until next time.

Lots of Love

PS,, Here are my watchers that I just couldn't resist posting.