Wow, the last few months of 2017 were crazy sewing-wise. After hardly even touching my machine for over two years, the passion was reawakened, and I haven’t looked back.
I made lots of things throughout November and December, but this last make is truly special, and I am so happy I am featuring it in my very first post!
Pattern: Butterick B6318 1961 dress
I saw this pattern on my last visit to Joann Fabrics, and loved that it featured kimono style sleeves, and also a tie to define the waist. I could see this working well for all those bold floral prints that are so popular right now. When I got home I started looking through my fabric stash for a possible contender, and landed upon my treasured silk fabric from Sew Over It . I loved this fabric immediately when I saw Lisa Comfort’s version of the 1940’s Wrap Dress, and ordered three meters. Initially, I was thinking I would also make the same dress, but when I received the fabric I wasn’t sure. The print was way out of my comfort zone. And I wasn’t sure about the color, either. It felt really vintage, but not in a good way. Visions of my mom and aunts starting flashing across my brain. And they weren’t stylish images.
But this fabric feels like a dream. It’s not super thin silk. And it has lots of body. I knew it needed a full skirt and something really simple (but not a moo moo or shift dress).
I started cutting out the fabric for my B6318 almost immediately. It felt so satisfying to finally hear my scissors slicing through the silk.
The dress came together very easily and quickly, with only a couple modifications do the silk fabric I chose.
Shortened the front bodice. After attaching the skirt to the bodice, I tried it on and noticed one huge issue. Because this fabric is so drapey and heavy for a silk, it completely stretched out the front bodice piece with the weight of the full gathered skirt and only darts in the bodice for structure. This meant that the waist seam drooped oddly about two inches in the front, and when I tied the ties, the waist seem showed. It looked awful. I wound up just sewing this front seem up higher, gradually stitching up in a half-circle shape between the side seems. It sounds weird, but it was the only thing that made it work. So, even though the waist seem is not even around the skirt, it actually looks pretty even when I put it on.
I also used an invisible zipper, rather than a concealed zipper that the pattern called for. I chose this because I didn’t want any top-stitching to show on the silk.
Oh, and because I wanted to use as much of this fabric as possible, the skirt pieces are a little wider, making the dress slightly more full. This was super easy to do, since the skirt pieces are just rectangles.
The hem is actually just finished with my serger. I really love the length it is this way, and it’s not really noticeable, so I don’t think I will change it.
Size Made: US 6