It’s Independent Pattern Month again! I have given the whole thing a miss for a couple of years, but decided I’d like to enter again this year. The fact that IPM2017 is in July instead of June really helped! The first week’s category is dresses, and I had just the one! Usually I’d make something for the girls, but neither of them are around at the moment, making fitting and photos a trifle tricky. I could have chosen my good friend who has had me-mades in the past, but she really doesn’t like being photographed and I didn’t want to make her feel uncomfortable, just to get a free dress!! So I asked another friend if she’d be interested – the answer! “Oh God, yeah!!”
I wanted to make the Itch to Stitch Anza Dress, which I had a pretty good feeling she’d like, and I was right! We chatted fabric choices while I took her measurements and then I went home to trawl the interwebs to find what she wanted. I sent a few links with something along the lines of what we’d discussed, and then threw in a curveball, a graduated, ombre viscose with geometric pattern – the reply was instant! “That one!”
Based on her measurements I traced the size 2 with D cup, grading out to the 4 at the waist, moving on t the 6 over the hip. I’d printed off the A0 version of the PDF, it’s so well laid out! There aren’t any pattern pieces overlapping onto different sheets and minimal wasted space. The PDF is layered so you could just print the size(s) you needed. Using an old sheet for the toile, it went together really well.
I followed all the instructions and used all the pieces, checking the pattern instructions as well as the fit this time round. I’ve never used an Itch to Stitch pattern before, and now I’m quite tempted to try another. The instructions are spot on, enough info if you need it, and clear enough to skim through and move on. The toile fitted just fine, I like patterns with cup sizes, no need for FBA! The dress is described as knee length – my friend is on the petite side but liked the hem length as it was, below the knee. So I didn’t shorten the skirt part and thankfully there were no other adjustments required.
The fabric is a viscose from Fabric Godmother, that is more like a voile, it’s a very lightweight viscose! I had already decided when I saw it online that it had to be cut with the gold at the hem, graduating white through grey and into the solid black for the bodice. The overlocker came in very handy for the construction, as did my daylight lamp… Sewing black on black is a killer on the eyes as you get (a little) older! The fabric was more challenging to work with than the old sheet had been! Perseverance and patience were the name of the game, neither qualities I have in abundance.
The dress itself took me two days to make, that’s including resetting the pockets about 4 times, and eventually recutting one front because I’d stuck the seam ripper through the fabric while taking off the pocket – again!!! It was so wiggly! Anyway, it’s all worked out fine in the end and I’m really chuffed with it! My friend bought the fabric, the elastic and black bias binding I used for the drawstring came from the stash, as did the vintage faceted buttons. They’d been sent to me by another friend who lives in the States.
We took the photos after work, (she’s a florist) and she’s informed me she’s not taking it off. Her partner will have to take her out tonight, she has a lovely new dress to wear! I think I might like to make another in linen, or a nice cotton, but I will steer clear of viscose voile for this pattern, and never make one in silk…
My dress has been shortlisted on The Monthly Stitch in the top 14 dresses, so the voting starts now! Follow this link to cast your vote, and see who else is in the running with more fabulous dresses!
Thanks to everyone who voted for my friend’s lovely new dress, I was one of the 8 winners of the dresses category and will be donating my prize of 3 Victory Patterns to the Makers for Grenfell fundraiser, run by Portia Lawrie.