I’m on the fence about this one… and I think it’s perhaps I’m not so happy with pictures or the fabric feels a little too slinky for this particular style. I do love the style and the colour. So it’s a 50/50 debate at the moment.
The fabric is a lovely rayon knit from The Fabric Store during the Sydney meet-up in March. I think a slightly heavier knit, less slinky & more matte, would work better. While the drape on this is gorgeous for the top, it’s not ideal for the skirt. The weight of the folded skirt pulls downwards and I need to hitch it up in the most unladylike fashion – you know… with a wiggle and a giggle (I’ve not always been famed for my decorum so I’m OK with that). The fabric slithers over my hips, I think something more matte would cling more to my hips (this must be the first time ever I’m looking for hip-clinging properties in a fabric LOL) and the dress would tend less to pull downwards.
I found it impossible to match this shade of bruised blue and any overlocking thread looked dreadful – so I did all overlocking stitches on my sewing machine. I know you can’t see the overlocking stitches but it bothers me… I can handle hot ‘n’ bothered but not sew bothered.
Once again with a Drape Drape make I found the finishing instructions on the neckline near impossible to achieve. Perhaps my knit was too soft, however the directions for finishing the neckline made it impossible to achieve a neat finish.
I attached a very narrow band as per a Sewaholic Renfrew and I think this finish is much nicer.
The book has you overlock the edges of the sleeve openings and then turn them over once and machine them down. As the sleeves fall open you do see the inside finish of the sleeve. I felt it would look terribly messy so I machine overlocked the edges in a matching thread and then turned them under twice. I pinned them, hand basted them and then machined them. Yes sounds fussy but the finish was much neater.
The wonderful effect of the skirt is achieved by large downwards folds at the sides – I love it and could have the side benefit of concealing significant VPL sins (although I made wise underwear choices here – enough said…)
I made the S/M size of this dress (it only comes in two sizes and this is the smallest size). I took the skirt side seams in considerably – sewing seams of about 30mm instead of 15mm. If I had left the seams as is, the dress hangs like a massive sack from my shoulders and is most unflattering. The shoulder seams are quite narrow to support 2m of fabric and I think the skirt needs to cling for the overall design to work.
I used tailor tacks to mark all the folds etc on this fabric – no chalk or pen would mark it well. I hand basted all the skirt folds and cuff pleats into place. Pins slide straight out of this rayon knit. Despite all that basting – this is a relatively quick dress to put together. It’s got slightly whacky pattern pieces but it’s not too much of a brain bender.
On a positive note, it’s quite demure compared to some of my other Drape Drape dresses… this is about as risqué as it gets…
Most of the versions I have seen omit the open sleeves – however I love them. It could be a gigantic sack on me and I love that my shoulders and arms can be seen now and then. I do find that the dress wants to slide forward and I think it could benefit from bra-keepers to help the dress stay on my shoulders. I adore how the fabric drapes in such fine folds across my back. It’s like water.
I do love the feel of it and it’s quite wearable. I think it feels better on than it looks through a camera lens – so either my eyeballs are lying or the camera lens is being cruel. At least my legs are not hanging out everywhere like this memorable number… and while this one may have been short – I have worn it a lot…
I think I would love it in matte black knit as a work dress with boots. I work in a cultural centre so my wardrobe choices are sometimes a little less conservative.
I’m very tempted to chop off the skirt, add a lower band to the top and turn this into a highly wearable batwing top. The colour is lovely…
Perhaps I was having a general ‘blah’ day, bad hair, sea breeze to deal with, sun fast disappearing… perhaps I’m too self-critical…
These were taken on the river in my lovely home town of Port Macquarie, outside the venue where my wedding reception was held… many, many moons ago!
Giveaway: and I forgot to add a close date for my giveaway so let’s make it midnight, Sunday 25 May 2014 – I will draw it on Monday night.
If I seem to be absent lately – May 2014 has been hardcore busy. ELH was away fishing for nine days, I work fulltime, I have two young daughters. I have volunteered for 6 hours at Ironman on an aid station (until 10pm at night), helped run a school fete stall (this takes HOURS over several weeks – and then a whole weekend – the fete raised $25,000 so I’m happy to have contributed). My daughter is competing in a dance eisteddfod so I’ve been taking her to rehearsals, out of town for a solo performance and this weekend we are at the ‘dance group weekend’ competition for the Eisteddfod out of town – where I have ‘ballet mother duties’ ie shovelling 20 children into ‘circus’ lycra outfits at 8.30am on a Sunday morning… I’m tired just thinking about my schedule this month… I’m not quite sure how I survived it…
Massive apologies that I’m not commenting on blogs at the moment. I am reading everything – I’m just rather knackered at night & typing is tough. Sorry!