My Dressmakers Ball Frock!
Wednesday 27th March 2019
Vogue V9253 made using our Lady McElroy Serengeti Vogue Linen Look Viscose!
Gosh this Dress has got to be the most deliberated make I have ever made. I have chewed the ears off of several of my friends about it including my Husband, who might I add is amazing at helping you to make a decision as he does not hold back with his critique! So much so that I'm considering advertising his services. LOL!
Let's talk about the fabric choice now. What a rollercoaster that's been! I had settled on making it in the Lady McElroy Foliage Canopy Crepe, I failed to take the required amount out of stock and it sold so that was that! I then thought leopard print! I had been really inspired by Leopard Print lovelies made by Instagrams Paula Loves To Sew, She Sew Vintage. Lisa Loyne's and The Stitch Edit and thought that it would make a really striking version. I ordered some especially for the dress at a show and it didn't come in time so I then came back to this fabric which I had not long received in stock. At one point I started to get cold feet and was unsure as to whether the combination of gratuitous low v and the leopard print may be a bit too much and I then considered what I thought a safer option. Thank God for my friend Adelle AKA Button and Pip who steered me back towards outrageous leopard print. It is a beautiful fabric and has proved to be the perfect match for this pattern as it has created a Dress one can swan around in, in a 'The Good Life' Margot esque way and like the ever-inspirational Robins Nest 1927 on Instagram who is a big fan of swanning. Oh, and it has pockets! Yay!
Ok so the cutting out phase was a little lengthy as I had to cut out in a single lay for this fabric as it wasn't wide enough for the large skirt pieces, however as the fabric does move a little, I think it was the best way forward, teamed with using both weights and pins. I really believe that taking the extra measures ensured that the fabric didn't distort whilst cutting.
So, the starting point is making the bodice. It has darts in the back and pleats in the front. I made it and hung it on my dress form and it looked awful. It just didn't look right. It appeared to have fullness on one side and I wasted a lot of time messing with the pleats. I blame this on sewing late at night during the witching hours when your mind can play tricks on you. I then rationalised and also hoped that all would be fine when it was attached to the skirt as the weight of this would ensure it hung correctly and it did! Hurrah!
One thing that I always have to remind myself with Big 4 patterns is that you have to remember to overlock your edges at the right points in construction as they don't always tell you to do so which in this pattern there was no reference at any point to do so. The only part which I felt I had to guess was the placement of the belt as the pattern image didn't seem to give much away and at that point, I was past digging the pattern pieces back out to check on there so I just guessed it. Hemming was a mammoth task as I had to take off about 4/5 inches and it was quite uneven, however with the use of my hemming tool on my Dress Form and the helping hand I received from my little girl removing all the marker pins it was pretty straight forward.
This make was sewn completely to the wire. It took 4 nights of sewing together. I was averaging 4.5 hours sleep a night during this project to finish on time. I finished it the morning of the ball in the end. Up and at 'em at 4:30!
I cannot tell you just how much I love the finished result! It ended up not gratuitous in anyway on myself, and I think I would have got away with not taping it had Instagrams Carrie Can Make it not come to my aid when I forgot my tape on the night! Its such a comfortable dress to wear. Perfect for a ball, meal, wedding or holiday. I had some really lovely comments about my dress especially from the lovely Emma AKA the Zipperfoot on Instagram! Thank you lovely.
Thank you for reading!