Tuesday, October 9, 2012

The case for a girdle. Or, New Look 6071.

So you know that while I had my hair styled and makeup on yesterday, I took photos not just of the Cambie, but of all the other stuff I've finished in the last few weeks!  It's going to be a real FO spam-a-thon around here for a few days!

Here are two dresses I had very high hopes for.  Sadly, those hopes were deflated.  They're not terrible, they just don't look as fabulous as I wanted them to.

A couple weeks ago, Andrea posted about a dress she'd made over the summer. She looks so fantastic in hers.  I wanted to look fantastic too!  So the very next day I went out and bought the pattern, and the day after that I made the dress.

I don't look as fabulous as Andrea.  I know this for certain now, because I tried twice.

My first go with the pattern was with the same stretchy grey knit I used for my yoga skirt a few weeks back.  It's really not heavy enough for a dress I think, but hey - it was around and it was cheap, so why not just test the fit?  I chose the smallest size, size 8, knowing that this fabric tends to stretch.

I also had some fabric in red, which I discovered was basically the same thing.  I'd thought it was a little heavier until I actually cut it out and started working with it.  I'm starting to think it might not be such a good idea to continue buying these unmarked fabrics off the remnants table at Vogue . . .

When I started taking pictures yesterday, I put on the red dress first.  The fabric is so thin that this dress shows everything.  After I got all those pictures taken and put on the grey dress, I decided it might not be a bad idea to pop on a girdle at the same time.  And you know?  It made a big difference!  So here I've got a side-by-side picture for you of the back:

Ewww!  Lumpy!

I sort of can't believe I even just posted that picture.  But it's all in the name of helping out the next person who makes this pattern.  Let's move on to some relatively more flattering pictures of the front.

I'm glad to finally have something that goes with this cardi.  I've had it for years.

One of the big problems with both these dresses is that while the fabric is quite stretchy, it doesn't have great recovery.  And like I said, it's very thin, so it shows everything.  I feel slightly more comfortable with a cardi over it.


Trying to look like a glamorous model, like Rachel.  And trying to suck it all in.  This was before lunch, folks!  Be assured that if and when I wear this out of the house, I will be donning the girdle!  I do think the color is great.

OK, now that we've got the red dress out of the way, let's move on to the grey. 

I'm also glad to have something that goes with this cardi.  I've had it for years too!

Avec et sans cardi.  The pattern has two versions - the sleeveless dress I made, and a three quarter-sleeved tunic-length top.  Like Andrea, I lengthened the dress by two inches - and I'm only 5'4" folks!

Pouty face.  And ponder-y face.

Here's my other problem with the dress.  I think that having this mass of fabric under my bust only serves to accentuate how little bust there is.  Sadly, this is with a padded push-up.

I will say that this was my first time working with a New Look pattern - I really wasn't even aware of this line until Andrea posted about it.  The instructions were pretty clear, and you certainly can't beat the price ($3.99US).  The construction of this dress was fun too - you make a buttonhole in the right bodice and pass the left bodice through it to get that cross.

I would like to try this one more time, with a heavier fabric containing a goodly portion of lycra.  It would be nice if I could find such a fabric in chocolate brown.  Because I've got plenty more cardis I hardly ever wear.

26 comments:

  1. OMG, a red dress with a black and white cardigan!? You're a woman after my own heart! ;-)))))

    I think the dresses turned out fabulously, despite the issues you've mentioned. I've always had problems with New Look patterns, for some reason. :-/

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    1. Hmmm . . . interesting. Fit problems, or construction problems, I wonder?

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  2. I always say, wear a slip, it does smooth things out. But despite your self critique, it looks great, especially with the cardigan. Nice job! You keep inspiring me to get the measuring tape out and figure out what size pattern to buy. I love wearing dresses and I have only one for fall. I need to make more!

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    1. Oh yes, I ALWAYS wear a slip, no matter what! I guess I'm a bit old-fashioned that way! I'd love to see some sewing projects from you alongside your lovely knits!

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  3. Gail, it looks great on you! Yes, it's true you are not a double "d" (and neither am I for that matter!) but I actually think the criss-cross detail looks quite good. There is nothing wrong with a small bust. I'm quite lumpy, er, curvy, at the waist and hip line and my dress doesn't show the lumps too much so I think maybe the fabric choice makes a difference as well. Having said that, and regardless of fabric choice, a girdle is always an excellent idea.

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    1. Thank you :-) I am interested to see how much of a difference the better quality fabric will make. I have a feeling it may be significant. But this pattern is on the back burner now, because I have a new pattern love. More on that later in the week!

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  4. seriously love this style of dress! i'll have to add this pattern to my list when they go on sale. both of yours turned out really nice! i hear you about being self conscious of the lumps and bumps, though these are nice enough i would break down and wear a slip (errr... make a slip... haven't owned one since i was a kid!) just so they didn't languish in the closet. you look great!

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    1. It seems somehow slips are out of vogue with the younger ladies? For my generation, I think they were pretty much de rigueur! And they really do make the clothing hang so much better. I even wear them with fully lined dresses and skirts!

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  5. Oh! So much to love about this post. First, the three dresses (these 2 and the previous 1) are so wonderful. At least in the pictures, especially of the red dress, I would say the criss-cross is bust-enhancing. The accessories are all wonderful, and you hair looks so fab! I especially love the white and black cardi.

    Thanks for posting great honest pictures pre & post girdle. I'm taking a knitting class this weekend in which we have to trace an outline of our bodies for the purpose of decided what is most flattering, and I'm not really looking forward to that task, LOL!

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    1. I did that last year, and while I'll admit it's tedious while doing it, it's such great information to have! It really informs a lot of my sewing nowadays.

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  6. These look great on you! I'm sure you would feel more comfortable with a sturdier fabric, but you really do look great in both dresses. I hate flimsy knits! It's hard not to feel self-conscious in them.

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    1. I guess I should quit being so cheap and spend a few bucks, eh? LOL!

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  7. I'm with you girl! I love my girdle with more clingy outfits or when I really want to rock the '50s look. I think you look great!

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    1. They're kind of miraculous, aren't they?

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  8. You have the most hilarious expressions, which sadly distracts me from the clothing you are trying to show off, oh well. In the photos both dresses look really beautiful, although I agree, the see-through thing would be a deal breaker for me. I might have to look into one of these miracle girdles....

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    1. Ummm . . . verbal expressions, or facial expressions?!

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  9. I think it looks really good, but I know what you mean about clingy stuff making you self-conscious. I hate when stuff clings to my thighs!
    I think it'll look even better with your plan of heavier fabric :)

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    1. I guess that means another order from Girl Charlee is due . . .

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  10. I'm with SoKnitPicky -- to my eye, they do look bust-enhancing and in the photos of each dress with the cardi, the eye just wants to travel up and it's very flattering. I love these dresses!

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  11. I love the red dress on you. I see no lumps only gorgeousness !! You look like a natural model, hair and make up perfect. The dress is truely devine ! I wish I looked like that on my back view lol, my 'wide load' warning tends to detract from pretty dresses ;-) Excellent work lady, especially making 2 !! Where on earth do you find the time ?! xxx

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    1. Where do I find the time? By avoiding the things I ought to be doing, LOL!

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  12. That is a cute pattern, and both of them turned out great. I know what you mean -- even though all of our lumps and bumps are different in size in shape, I have yet to talk with a woman who loved how flimsy knits looked when worn fitted. (And I saw your comment above; it's always nice to have an excuse for another GC order...) I completely adore the styling of *both* of those cardigan pair-ups!

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    1. I got suckered by color! And it's not just MY lumps and bumps that show - the seams of my slip, the sliders on my bra straps - everything!

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  13. There's nothing wrong with a good girdle, you look fabulous!

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