Let me start off with a very welcome hello everyone. This is the first in a series that will be featured this year. I am partaking in the #2018makenine tag. But I have kind out outdone myself and want to make one for every month. I know this is the end of March, but with the summer holiday coming up in a couple short months I should be able to get a lot done.
So this year was going to be 2018 Make Nine, that turned into 2018 Make Twelve, and is now currently Make Fourteen, but leading to fifteen. What can I say. I am a little ambitious this year. And I want to see how much I can get done with my current costume plans for the year. I am currently working on Agent Carter, and Padme. I am writing this up on Tuesday with hopes that it will be up by Sunday. At least that is the plan. (On a side note, this is spring themed which is just in time for the #alittlelawnparty.)
As with every pattern you read the envelope first, then pick your fabrics, and grab other necessities along the way. I didn’t follow any of the fabric recommendations/guidelines at all. I went with a rayon for the base skirt piece, rayon for the pockets, and a stretch crepe for the bodice/hip piece.
Let’s start off with materials first and foremost.
Dress Portion– 45-60” 1 and 7/8 yard (I can fit the large and should have probably gone with the medium, but I want larger waist ties.)
Contrast Bottom– 45-60” 1 yard
Contrast Pockets– 45-60” 3/8 yard
Notions—Thread, two packages of ½” single fold bias tape, one package of ¼” double fold bias tape. I believe the double fold bias tape has to match the pockets, and the single fold matches the main body of the dress. But will let you know farther on if this is not correct.
Interfacing—I interfaced the contrast bottom and the contrast pockets because I purchased rayon for them. If you get the materials listed on the packet you won’t need interfacing.
I purchased everything above and then got to cutting out the pieces. With every pattern I am going to use I will try and finagle the pieces to see if I can get the most out of my fabric while keeping grainlines intact.
So I cut out my pieces differently than they show on the pattern instructions. If you get sixty-inch-wide fabric you don’t need all what is listed on the back for the top of the tunic dress. The pattern envelope says to purchase 1 7/8 a yard for the dress top, if you go XL. I will be cutting out the large, but bought enough for the XL because I want extra wide waist bands. I think I only used a yard or a yard and a quarter at most. Fold your fabric in half, the selvages touching at the center on the folded edge. Cut out the least wide piece first. And then fold over the other edge keeping level with the grainline until you have enough room to cut out the back piece. If you need an image on how to do this let me know in the comments below and I will remake this with more images. (I already want to make another one. Out of the medium this time.) Even at the large size I was able to cut this out of just that little bit of fabric. I like to save as much fabric as possible for other purposes. I’ll probably make a skirt out of the rest.
After I cut out the bottom dress piece and the pockets I interfaced them with a fusible stretch knit interfacing. I don’t know that they still carry the exact one, but they carry something similar at joanns to what I used. Now with all your pieces cut, interfaced, and ready to sew you can begin the assembly process. I briefly glanced at the directions again and then decided I would just make it how I think is the easiest way.
What I do is pin all the pieces that can be sewn in stages. I folded the waistband ties over and pinned the edges down. Pinned the pocket band to the top of the pocket with the pleat in the pocket in place. Pinned the contrast bottom portion to the dress piece. Matching notches.
Then I took all of this to the sewing machine and stitched up the edges. All edges were then pinked with my pinking shears and some were zigzagged over. The ones with rayon that won’t be covered with a seam were zigzagged.
Afterwards I placed bias tape on the pocket band with the loose edge. Turned the waistband inside out and pinned those. Back to the sewing machine we go to sew down the seam on the dress. As well as the bias tape on the pocket band and the waistband straps were topstitched. The pockets were then bias taped around all the edges and attached to the dress at the front where the pattern indicates. Attach the waistbands at your natural waist, do not follow the pattern for this. Peoples waists are at different heights. I placed the shoulder seams at my shoulders and then pinned the waistband tie on one side then matching it to the other side.
All that is left is to sew up the side seams an inch above the notches to the bottom of the dress. Pink the seams and sew them down for a more finished look. Then the arms and the neckline are all turned inward and sewn down. I omitted the bias tape for the neckline and arm holes as well as the part where you attach the contrast to the dress. With the interfacing I didn’t think the seams needed the bias binding to be finished. Especially with pinking and zigzagging the edges. And since I used a stretch crepe for the top portion the neckline didn’t need to be stabilized with the bias tape. Hem the dress to the desired length.
After thoughts—Okay. This is a fairly easy piece to sew. It took me about three hours to sew everything and an hour to cut and interface the rest of it. It is fairly inexpensive dependent on fabric costs. I believe everything cost me around 30-35$ total. Including the bias tape that I didn’t use. That doesn’t include the interfacing as I already have most of it and only needed to purchase another yard to finish the rest.
I did leave out the bust darts where the waistband is supposed to attach. I made my ties extra wide and felt that they were not necessary. Although when I redo this I will most definitely be adding those. But I still will not be adding the waist ties at the bust darts. I prefer them at the sides. And the width of them are fairly nice. But with the next one I make I want to make them smaller to see how they look.
When I make the tunic for this I will update this post to add that information to it. Onto the next challenge, #alittlelawnparty.