I warn you now, today's post may contain excessive gushing about fabric. Why? Because this dress, my second version of New Look 6723, is made of what may be some of my favourite material I've ever used.
I'm also likely to spend more time talking about the fabric because, in terms of construction, this dress is exactly the same as my first New Look 6723, so there's not a lot new to say!
As a quick recap, I made view D and used a size 14 at the shoulders and graded out to a 16 from the bust downwards. I also elminated the centre front bodice seam, added pockets (from the Emery dress) and used an invisible zip instead of the lapped zip used in the pattern.
So that fabric...it's a Liberty lawn from the Alice in Wonderland themed Spring Summer 2015 collection, and the print is called Suzy Elizabeth. Like many Liberty lawns, the small-scale print means that from a distance it looks like a bit of a random pattern, but look at it closer and its true fantasticness is revealed.
Hopefully this close-up lets you see the host of teapots, teacups and general tea party paraphernalia - it's really fun!
I loved the whimsical print as soon as I saw it online but, let's face it, Liberty don't produce the cheapest of fabrics around and my sewing budget is unfirtunately not limitless. Some things are worth paying for though, and the combination of what I know is a beautiful base fabric and a print that I adore seemed like it would be one of those things.
So, I decided to be a bit of a geek and save up for it. I had a little piggy bank that I'd been given with some chocolate in it at Christmas, which I put on my mantelpiece and every time I ended up with a few pound coins in my purse, I'd put one in the piggy bank. It's amazing how quickly the fund builds up without you even noticing! Has anyone else ever done that or am I just weird?!
Luckily for me, the saving process was cut short by Liberty putting the fabric in their sale, making it cheaper than any of the other sources of Liberty online, so I snapped up enough for a dress, and then I just needed to decide what pattern would be the lucky recipient of this beauty. As it's undoubtedly my favourite pattern, the Emery dress would have seemed like the obvious candidate, but I think that it's better with a slightly larger print so I decided not to use it this time. I was really happy with my first 6723 though, so that's the option I went for - and I'm really happy with the results!
I love both of my versions of New Look 6723, but what I think I appreciate most of all is the fact that the different scales and colours of the fabrics that I used makes them look like totally different dresses. The floral fabric of my first version is definitely a medium-weight cotton too, so feels very different to wear from this floaty lawn. Isn't that one of the lovely things about sewing? There are so many variables that can create such different garments.
It might seem like a strange time of year to be making a sleeveless dress in England, but there are lots of colours hidden in the the details in this print, which to me means plenty of cardigan options for warmth. I also think the dress will work paired with tights, so I'll still be wearing it for a while more this year. And the best thing? I just made a teapot necklace so now I have the perfecct accessory for my handmade dress! What have you been making recently?