Monday, May 27, 2013

What I've Been Up To...Dresses!

As I sit down to write this post, I think about how I've complained to myself that I haven't had a lot of time to sew. But when I think about how many projects I've worked on, it's not that bad! I've finished 2 dresses and 1 shirt in the past month/ month and a half. I've been busy working out in the yard and doing other things around the house, but I would have to say my progress is not too shabby! 

The first dress I made was Vogue 1225 by Tracy Reese. I've always loved Tracy Reese's dress designs and the fabric she uses, so having a pattern collection from her by Vogue is exciting. This dress is a mock wrap bodice with gathered front shoulders and elastic waist. The skirt section is also really flowy and makes you want to dance! The fabric is an awesome peacock feather print on rayon knit. (Bought at Fabric Mart, but not available anymore.) 

The dress was quite easy to make, but I'm not so sure about the gathering at the top of the shoulders. If I were to make this dress again, I would do it a little different, but not sure what I would do yet. I'm just afraid the gathers are going to fall out. The dress ended up being about 1-2 inches shorter than intended because I did not have enough fabric to make the dress. So I ended up shortening the skirt section and putting a smaller hem on it. 

Here you can see how full the skirt is. Great for dancing---if I did that...haha! The back has a slit opening with a tie closure-- a designer touch. This dress only took me a day from start to finish. It was a fun pattern, but I'm not sure if I will make it again. 

The next weekend, I decided I wanted to make retro-style dress. I was inspired when I saw someone post a picture of their submission to the Mad Men Dress Challenge. I've always loved retro designs, but was never sure if they would look right on my body. I was also worried that it would look REALLY homemade. I used Simplicity 3833. This pattern is actually a reprint of a pattern from the 60s. 

I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised with the turnout. It did not feel homemade and it fit pretty well! I had to do some tweaking at the bust/underarm area-- I had some gapping that just needed an extra dart to bring it in. I used a beautiful embroidered cotton from Jones New York (bought at Fabric Mart, not available anymore.) The dress looks good with and without a belt.  You can see in the picture above I added a belt. (I actually forgot to bring a belt along to work that day, so I found a piece of white fabric to give the illusion!)

Here is the dress without a belt---not too bad! The dress would look super cute with a bib necklace-- I guess my next task is to find the perfect one. Any suggestions?


  1. great dresses! i really love the tracy reese dress. there are a few tracy reese vogue patterns i would like to make, just haven't done it yet!

  2. Thanks! I tend to pick up a Tracy Reese pattern every time Joann's has Vogue on sale! Haha.