Being Don's wife is hard work. All those cigarettes to smoke, wine to drink, all while actively ignoring the children. "Shut up Sally and stop shoving food in your face." God knows how I find the time to make bitchy comments with Francine. Just the other day I got so fed up with everything that I shot a few of the neighbor's pigeons. At least Sally and Bobby made sure to keep my wine glass topped up that night. Don finally came home and said I look pretty in my new dress. Guess I'll grace him with a smile tonight.
remade this pattern, reminding me that I wanted this dress as well as her legs and her Don robot. I contented myself with only purchasing the pattern.
lobster quilting cotton and the Liberty went back into the stash cave.
As much as I'd love to hoard Liberty lawn forever, it stuck me that McCalls 6696 had the right details for my taste. I took the plunge and put scissors to those luscious red roses. Eck! Even having a well fitting muslin doesn't take the sting out of cutting into Liberty. "What if I screw this up? The sewing goddess will surely curse me forever." However once you get over that hump, sewing with Liberty is such a joy. I start wondering why can't I be filthy rich and have bolts of it? Who wants to plan a Liberty lawn heist with me? Hashtag #LLheist. I'm sure there's no way they can trace it back to this blog.
Bad thing about this pattern, or maybe just view A, is that it takes a shit ton of hand sewing. So Much Hand Sewing....what have I done? Save me from the needle's wrath! Finishing the dress was a slog and the only thing keeping me going was staring at red roses and Stephen King's Dark Tower series on audio book. Ahhh yeah, scratch my science fiction/western itch.
McCall's 6696 - View A. Henceforth referred to the view of copious hand sewing.
Liberty Tana Lawn in the discontinued Carline print. Dear Liberty, how can I convince to start reprinting this design again? Cookies? Buying more lawn? Not planning to rob your store? Let me know. Smooches
1. I excitedly bought the larger size nest without looking at the measurements on the envelope. Turns out that the 36" bust size 14 is in the smaller size nest. Doh! Since I needed the size 16 for my lower body I decided to do a little fast and loose grading on the top half of the pattern rather than exchange the pattern. I used the method of grading using the existing sizes explained in this post. But instead of grading up, I did the opposite and graded down.
2. This was my first time using a McCall's pattern that had the different cup size options. Since I wear a DD US/E European bra size I traced the D cup bodice. When I mocked up the dress I found a fitting problem that I'd never encountered before. The neck/shoulders, which had been graded down, fit perfectly. The hip area also fit perfectly. But in the bust/waist area I literally had inches of extra ease. I'm going to guess that the different cup sizes have FBA adjustments already made to them. Since I rarely need one of those, using the D sized bodice might not be the best fitting option for me. To fix the ease problem I took 3/4" out of the side seam of the entire bodice and waistband. The top of the skirt was nipped in 3/4" to match the waistband and then graded out to zero at the hip.
3. The bodice was shortened 1/2" and the waist dart shortened 1".
4. Standard dropping of the side seam dart an 1".
5. Standard 1/2" forward shoulder adjustment made.
In retrospect, it would have been a lot less work to start with the size 14 and just grade out the hip a bit. Oh well, I couldn't have foreseen this unless someone explicitly mentioned it in a PR review. (I didn't bother to check before plunging into the project.)
1. Confession - I hated sewing this dress because it was about 50% hand stitching. The first half of assembly is fine and then suddenly you find yourself doing yards and yards of hand stitching with one machine seam in between. If you make view A you will have to hand stitch, the waist band facing, the giant hem, both button band facings, both armhole bias bindings, and finish with sewing on 12 buttons. I did most of this with a head cold, which did not improve the process.
2. The shoulder strap piece for the included slip does a fine job doubling as bias binding piece for the armholes. You know if you had a brain fart and thought it actually was a bias binding pattern piece and already cut the fabric. I did use a 1/4" seam allowance to sew the strip on due to the width of the piece.
4. There was some sort of nonsense in the directions about turning the hem up 2 + inches and then trimming it down. I guess a wider hem would be a nice design element in a semi-see through fabric like the eyelet they used in there pattern sample. I wanted the hem a little longer anyway so my dress has a 1 1/4" hem that did not need to be eased in. The button band was plenty long enough to accommodate this with out any adjustment.
5. I heard, through the grapevine, about some people feeling there was too much ease in the back. For me this wasn't an issue, probably because my upper back is wide. I was able to skip my standard width adjustment since there was already plenty of ease to move my arms around.
"It's got a collar and buttons. Do those buttons open up? Does it have pockets? Well that's convenient. Are you wearing a belt with that? Does the collar chafe your neck? No? OK that's good. It looks stylin'." *Then the spelling of styling was specified.*
My Final Thoughts
Even though I was cursing my lot during the hand sewing, I knew it was going to be fine in the end. I could tell from the muslin that this would be a comfortable dress and easy to accessorize. The style of pattern is "me" or at least me at this current moment. (Damn changeable whims.) The Carline print was a perfect match and I admit enjoying the flurry of instagram liking while making this dress. None of you can resit the fabric's charms....and I don't blame you. Roses goooood.
Coincidentally Mary just made this pattern too. Linking over so you can get a look at another lovely version. That's 3 shirt dresses for the price of one, cause I'm not trying to brain wash you into buying the pattern or anything. (Buuuuuuy Ittttt.)