Wednesday, May 16, 2012

McCall's 6078 meets McCall's 6069

McCall's 6069, now out of print (but why so soon?), is a great dress pattern, but the low back cowl isn't something I'm comfortable wearing at work.  So, to replicate the style but with a fitted back, I took another favorite pattern, McCall's 6078, and combined view B with the skirt from 6069.  I compared the bodice of 6069 with 6078 and traced 6078, cutting off quite a bit of length but still giving the new bodice an inch more in length than 6069.  This was a pretty easy project, and I think the result is work-appropriate.
Here are some of the things I did:
  • I underlined the skirt with tricot for modesty and to give the skirt a little more body
  • I hemmed the skirt with the coverstitch (1.25" hem)
  • Instead of making a narrow 5/8" hem on the armscyes and the back neck, I bound them by using 1.25" strips.  I sewed the edge of the strips to the right side of the back neck and the armscyes in a 5/8" seam, trimmed the seam allowances, pressed the binding to the wrong side, and coverstitched them (1" hem)
  • All seams were sewn and serged
  • I followed the 6069 instructions for the self-casing at the waist, but I finished the edge with the serger rather than leaving it raw--ditto the edge of the cowl facing
  • I will probably wear this with a gold chain belt, but I also made the tie belt from 6069; it is wrapped twice around the waist in these photos 
  • I didn't add the side seam pockets
I'll definitely make this combo again--and I'm sure I have plenty of fabric in my stash :) so no need to go shopping (darn it).  I might also make a dress with this same skirt but use the Jalie scarf top as the bodice.

This sunny yellow fabric is an ITY jersey from Fashion Fabrics Club that I bought about a year ago; it has a pretty substantial hand for an ITY, and is almost too heavy since I underlined the skirt.
Up next?  I'm pre-treating a knit for another McCall's 5974, but I might work on a Vogue shirtdress in a stretch woven first.
Hope all is well in your world and that you have happy sewing!  
~ Peggy

Sunday, May 13, 2012

New Dresses in Action!

 Happy Sunday!  I thought I'd share a few pix of my latest dresses.  First is McCall's 5974 in a size 12--definitely the right size.  If I get my act together, I'm going to cut this out in the aqua fabric I showed in the last post.

And here's a photo of McCall's 2401.  I wouldn't normally wear these shoes (a favorite pair of Stuart Weitzman's!) with the dress, but I didn't want to try the photographer's patience ;)

Well, time to go to the movies!  We're going to see The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.  Hope you had a fabulous day!

Happy sewing! ~ Peggy 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

McCall's 5974

 This is the second time I've made McCall's 5974--this time, in a size 12 instead of a 14.  The 14 is very comfortable but pretty loose, so I thought I'd try it a size smaller.  I'm still debating which size is better, and I think it will help to see some pix with the dress in action instead of on the form; those'll have to wait until DD comes for a visit.

I added 3 inches to the length of the skirt, and an inch in length to the bodice.  The seams were all sewn and serged, and I used the coverstitch to hem the sleeves and skirt.  I skipped the zipper--no need with such a stretchy knit.  Instead of making a narrow hem at the neck, I bound the neck edges.  The shoulders were stabilized with fusible interfacing, and the sleeves were sewn in flat. 
This isn't a difficult pattern, but the fabric drove me nuts.  I went through 3 needles on this stuff!  Oh well.  The fabric was purchased on sale from for $2.39 a yard; the pattern was purchased for 99 cents on sale at Joann's.  Cheap!  This makes me happy.  I am, ahem, selectively frugal.  I think this style is very flattering, and I want to make some more of these dresses once I have the size figured out.  In fact, I think I'll use this recent purchase:
Thank you for your kind comments on my recent projects.  I really appreciate your time and generosity!
Happy sewing! ~ Peggy

Monday, May 7, 2012

Another Sheath, 80s Maternity Dresses, and a New Project

This is my third attempt at McCall’s 2401, and I think I am finally done tweaking the fit!  This is an easy pattern to whip up, and it has lots of potential for different looks.  Kind of funny, though, that I keep sewing the same view!  I do envision making some long sleeved versions in double knit for fall/winter. 
This dress is made from a really nice Robert Kaufman pique (circa 1992) that I recently found packed away in the garage.  I have a lot of this fabric, and I like the print, so I thought it was perfect for another go-round with this pattern.  

I assume the fabric is 100% cotton, but it washed/dried like a dream with no wrinkles.  I added 7/8” to the bodice length and several inches to the skirt length, lined it with batiste, and used an invisible zipper.   Oh, and something else:  I used a blind-hem foot for the first time, and it worked like a charm!  Soooo much faster than hemming by hand.  This will probably be worn with a cardigan and thin belt in fuchsia.
You know what else was in the packing box with this fabric?  These maternity patterns from the 80s! I'd forgotten that there was a line of Dynasty patterns.  The Vogue pattern was clearly inspired by Princess Diana.  I made both of these way back when, but I didn't add the shoulder pads!
Next up?  I'm working on McCall's 5974.  I've made this once before in a 14; this time, I'm trying out a 12.  For this iteration, because I'm not exactly sure how well this size will work for me, I'm using a recent purchase that I picked up on sale for $2.39 a yard.  If I don't like the fit (or the fabric), it won't be the end of the world.
Shoe love:   These Cole Haan shoes are the latest additions to my closet.  They're incredibly comfortable, and since they were on sale, I bought them in 3 shades: black, red, and cove (sand) patent.  
 Happy sewing! ~ Peggy