As I announced in my recent post for the Minerva Blogger Network, I have set a challenge for myself to Sew my Suitcase for my holibobs. At least 90% of the clothing in my suitcase that I take to Budapest in August will be handmade by little old me. I’m being whisked away to Croatia in 3 weeks time so I thought it would be a good chance to get in some practice! So, this is my Zadar Dress.
I decided that at 25 yrs of age I needed a maxi dress in my life. Ready to wear maxis have failed me in the past as I’m a pretty big chested girl, so an elasticated boob-tube affairs just don’t cut it, and being only 5ft 2″ ALL maxis are huge and make me look shorter than I am. So sewing one was the only option and New Look 6774 seemed the best way to go as you can pick and choose which combo you wanted. There are 9 different bodices to choose from, and 2 different skirt lengths so you really can pick what’s right for you. I went for a nice simple bodice and the floor length skirt. Whilst on the subject of the skirt, I had to take 5 inches off the bottom of the pattern. FIVE WHOLE INCHES! I am not a tall person ha.
As you can see the bodice is a bit baggy around the arms. I feel I should maybe place in darts, but this is really hard to do as I don’t have a tailors dummy, and I’d be pining to myself with the dress on. It doesn’t look too bad, and I quite like the movement to be honest. We’ll just see how it goes!
The bodice is lined, making it so very comfy! I wasn’t keen on lining it and nearly missed this out but the pattern called for interfacing, so I followed the instructions like a good girl and boy am I glad I did! RTW maxis tend not to be interfaced at the top creating that oh so unflattering uni boob where your chest is squished like you’re having a mammogram! The interfacing holds the bodice correctly which also means the skirt can drape properly from the waist. I’m always going to look for this in the future. I wore the dress to work and didn’t have to adjust it once!
I had to take the dress in by almost an inch at the top. Not 100% sure as to why, unless I lost weight between measuring and cutting! I have a feeling it’s something to do with New Look have a different seam allowance. Has anyone else found this?
Another thing to look for in my dress are the random joins in my pattern pieces! I’ve had this fabric for a while. It’s a piece of discontinued fabric that a customer returned. I snapped it up before it could be put back into stock (perks of the job ;D) as it was so soft and the floral pattern was so interesting! Due to this, I only had so much (2 metes I think) and the pattern called for 2.3 or something like that so I had to be strategic with my pattern piece placement. Because I wanted straps and not the sleeveless bodice I ended up doing this in two pieces as I didn’t have a clear length of fabric long enough once the skirt pieces had been placed and I’d already cut down the 1.5″ hem allowance down. I joined the pieces together on the diagonal so the join is almost un-noticeable (people at work could only see it when I pointed it out).
I had to do the same for the back bodice piece near the zip as this idiot completely forgot to cut this piece out and had to jigsaw it together from the off cuts! I used the same diagonal join trick and though slightly more noticeable that the front join, the pattern of the fabric hides it well.
I really like the value aspect of this pattern, but due to the fact there are a lot of different pieces it makes it rather fiddly to cut. You really need a notebook handy to write down which pieces you need and to tick them off once you’ve cut them out (and tick again once you’ve pinned them in my case). I think the value aspect of this pattern wins my heart in the end, though. I’m a sucker for a bargain!
I really hope you like the dress, I really enjoy wearing it! Though working with a floaty jersey is really making me want an overlocker!
Craft or Glory!
Katie B x