When New Look 6184 was the free pattern with Sew magazine a few months ago, I instantly earmarked it for my summer sewing plans. I mean, with a fitted bodice with a pretty pleated neckline, and a flared skirt (or pencil skirt if that's more your style), what's not to like?
It turns out that it was also nice and easy to sew, and came together quickly, so that makes it even more of a winner in my book!
The bodice is unlined and finished with a neck facing and bias tape around the armholes, and while I do prefer the finish of lined bodices in general, there's no denying that a facing is quicker and gives you a light and breezy dress for the summer.
I did initially have a bit of the problem with the facing not lying flat and trying to peep out along the front neckline - I was assured you didn't notice it at all when I had the dress on, but I could definitely see it and it was bothering me so I needed to sort it out! I tried catch stitching the bottom of the facing to the bodice, but that spoiled the effect of the pleats. I ripped that out and instead catch stitched down the facing in diagonal lines from the corners of the neckline, and that seems to have done the trick.
For this version of the bodice (there's also a higher necked version), the only shaping is provided by the pleats at the neckline, so I was slightly concerned about how I'd make any alterations if it didn't fit properly but thankfully for me it fits well pretty much straight out of the box. I made a size 16, and just needed to add an inch to the bodice length (standard for me) and an inch to the skirt (also not unusual for me!).
I also ended up taking an extra half a centimetre out of the side seams at the underarms during construction - I'm noticing that I often need to do that with sleeveless tops/dresses so maybe I should think about going down a size in the shoulders or something?
There's a bit more ease in the front of the bodice than I'm used to in patterns like the Emery, for example, but I think that's going to be inevitable when the pleating at the neckline is the only shaping. I like the fit anyway, so it's all good!
Can we take a moment to appreciate this invisible zip please?! I feel like I've finally cracked a way to insert them nicely that seems to work reliably for me. I've probably jinxed it now though and will have problems next time I try to use one!
The fabric for this dress was another bargain from The Village Haberdashery sale section, at a time when they had an extra discount running for the sale section, so I think it was only something like £4 a metre. Really it would have been silly not to have it at that price, right?! I actually already have another dress in a different colourway of the same print, but they look quite different, so that's OK I think.
I think that's about all I've got to say about this one! As you've probably guessed, I'm pretty happy with it, even more so because at about the same time as I finished it I found these pretty red shoes that go really nicely with it! What have you been sewing recently?