Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Greek goddess? Sorry, I'm Italian.

But doesn't my new dress kind of remind you of a chiton?

{chiton image source}

Of course, my shoes are way better than anything available in ancient Greece.  Also, I have arms.  But no chariot.

{shoes by Biviel}

Anyhooo . . . This is McCall's 6744, a pattern I first saw on Kathy's blog a month or so ago.  Her version made me want the pattern - you know, like right away.  So I picked it up at the next pattern sale.  And then of course, did nothing with it until last week.


I wasn't able to find that many finished versions of this dress online, but the other one that struck me was Mimi G's.  Both Mimi and Kathy said the pattern was easy peasy and could be sewn up in a few hours.  So naturally, I found it to be a royal pain!

A big part of my frustration was that I wanted to be able to use my new coverstitch machine on it, alongside my serger.  But the way the dress is constructed, you really need to do a lot of the stitching with a regular sewing machine (especially if you don't want to draft separate elastic casings, which of course I didn't).  Somehow, having three machines out and switching between them was a deal breaker for me - just way too tedious.  So I ended up sewing the entire thing on the sewing machine except for the neckline edge.

But that's a great thing if you love this design and don't have a serger or coverstitch machine - the instructions are completely geared toward using a sewing machine.  The side seams are done as "double stitching" - two rows of stitching 1/4" apart:


There's a lot of room for variation in this pattern.  I chose to use the bodice of View C with the skirt from View A - the slight overlap provided for the wrap skirt on View C is insufficient for Chicago winds.


The reason I did so much internet searching for finished versions of this dress was that I had a hard time deciding which size to make.  If I go by the body measurements on the envelope, I'm a S at the bust, M at the waist and L at the hip.  I considered going down a size overall, but my fabric has very little stretch, so in the end I went with a straight size S.  What helped me come to that decision was measuring the skirt of this dress I made last fall.  I like the fit of that one, and I've found that going a little slimmer in a knit dress than I think I ought to actually makes it more flattering and less like it's swallowing me up.  The skirt on my Sophie dress measured 38" and it skims my hips nicely.  The finished hip measurement on the pattern tissue (and verified by my measuring tape) for the size S is 43.5" - I definitely didn't want to go any bigger than that.  Size-wise, I think I made the right decision.


I much prefer this dress belted, and I also admit that it's not the most flattering thing from the back:


But I still like it.  And since there's a deep V-neck, Hubby quite liked it!  Boys - they're so predictable!  To ensure my own comfort and modesty, I ended up sewing that faux wrap closed - wrap tops have never worked for me.  For some reason they just don't stay closed.


The fabric is an Ella Moss rayon jersey from Girl Charlee (still in stock and now on sale!).  I bought this in three colorways last fall because I really liked the print, but was very disappointed when I received it because it was so thin and had very little give.  But it works for this pattern, since it sews more like a woven and this pattern uses the sewing machine.  I like how it kind of looks like snakeskin.

Of course, I didn't remember to get a good shot of the shoulders, but the shoulder seam encases elastic which gathers it.  I used regular braided elastic, and after the fact felt I should have used clear elastic - my sleeve hem got pretty bulky:


And I hemmed the darn thing with the sewing machine (see tedious, re: three machines, above).  I didn't even use a walking foot on any of this - that's how un-stretchy this fabric is!  I think I may have used a ball-point needle though.  I don't really remember now as it's been a week since I finished it!


I was pretty grumpy about the dress after I finished it because I found it so frustrating to make.  But now that some time has passed, I think I really like it.  The fabric is very lightweight, but wearing a slip underneath takes care of any modesty issues.  I've actually started to think I'll do it again in one of my other colors of this fabric - is that too weird?  Multiples of the same dress only in different colors?



I have a belt that would look fantastic with this dress in the olive green . . .

41 comments:

  1. It looks great!! It's not too weird if you want it in different colors - I love TNT patterns! Also, I think it looks just fine in the back - nothing wrong at all.

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    1. Thank you! I love TNT patterns too, but I don't usually make them in different colors of the same exact print! I think I'll end up doing it though!

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  2. I just made up view D this past weekend! I had seen it originally on Mimi G's site (wish I had her body to go along with it). Isn't it a great pattern? Sorry that you had trouble though. I sewed a size small also and like you I sewed up the wrap top (since I have no 'girls' to fill mine out). I think your dress looks great (and I really want your shoes)! I'm already thinking of sewing it again in the shorter length since it's so quick to put together.

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    1. Hehehe - I was thinking of doing the longer length next time! I want to see yours - you need to start a blog! ;-) Or am I missing something and you already have one? Your commenting signature doesn't link to anything . . .

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    2. Definitely try the longer version (no shaving!). I would like to start a blog when I've been sewing longer. I'm Shar_L on Flickr which I post to pretty regularly. I haven't taken a picture of this dress yet, but probably will this weekend.

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    3. Thanks for the link! I hopped on over and wow, you have some beautiful makes! I don't think you need to wait!

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    4. That's quite a compliment coming from you - thank you!

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  3. Ummmm I love it !! I love the fabric, such a flattering tone. Also lady !! Shoes !!! I want ! I always repeat patterns, if you like em and they look good why stop at one ?! I actually think this is one of my favourite dresses on you. Good work :)) xx

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    1. Thank you! Aren't these shoes great? They're super comfy too, despite the high heel. I'm kicking myself for not buying them in the other colorway (teal and brown) - they're years old now and can't get them any more :-(

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  4. Ahh yes boys, very predictable indeed ;) I also have the same problems with wrap tops, I made one from Burdastyle this winter and I also had to sew it closed to keep it decent.
    I really like your dress!

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    1. Thank you!

      Shar hit the nail on the head (I was trying to be delicate!) - not enough up front to keep it closed in my case, LOL!

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  5. I love the print. I think if you've found a great pattern that works for that fabric - go for it and make multiples! I've often purchased identical RTW clothes in different colors, when I've found something that fits well.

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    1. I do that too! But somehow making multiples seems a little weirder to me than buying them - I don't know why!

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  6. Multiples? Do iiiiit! This is so "you" I reckon! :) I think you picked the perfect size! :)

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    1. Hehehe - the "real me" wears junky old jeans and crappy old t-shirts, LOL! But I do like this style!

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  7. I also made this last week. Like you I struggled with deciding which machine to use. I mostly used my serger and used the sewing machine for the neckline and to use the waist seam allowance to create the casing. Right now mine is not hemmed...it will have to wait until I gather the energy to rethread my coverstitch machine. I am sure I will make it again as it is so comfy! Hopefully this link will work for you.
    http://newribena.tumblr.com/post/55110787947

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    1. Oh, yes, it did work! I love the fabric you used! I also took a look through your other projects and love the Burda draped bias-cut dress you made - that pattern has been on my list since the magazine came out! You've made a lot of beautiful things!

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  8. That steel color looks great on you. Sorry it was such a pain. But it was worth it because it looks great on you. Also, I am so impressed that you bought the pattern recently and managed to do it! I have patterns I got ages ago and have forgotten I owned them. I need to stop being such a hoarder and get sewing!

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    1. It's funny you should say that - I don't actually like it all that much! This was my least favorite color of the three I got, which is why I started with it. I figured if I messed it up I wouldn't be too bummed!

      And I'm pretty impressed with myself, re: using the pattern so soon! Very unlike me, actually!

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  9. Loving this one on you. That fabric is fab and it looks like its the most comfortable thing to slip on for stylish summer dressing.

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  10. Well the aggravation was definitely worth it - the dress really suits you and I can see how versatile it is. I imagine this would be a great dress to take on holiday :)

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  11. I really like this dress, it looks like the perfect combination of comfortable and stylish. I think this style would be for those days when I want to look nice but can't really be bothered.

    I love those shoes too - you have a great shoe collection.

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    1. Hehehe - like, every day, in my case! LOL!

      Yes, I may have a bit of a shoe problem . . .

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  12. Love, love, love ~ the whole look: dress, shoes, sunglasses, belt! The fabric is such a nice surprise ... I probably wouldn't have given it a second look in the fabric store but seeing it sewn up in this style is perfection.

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    1. Thank you! I actually went and purchased the belt specifically for this outfit! I'm seriously lacking in belts. Must fix that!

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  13. I'm glad you have arms:) otherwise, you wouldn't have been able to make this Italian goddess confection!

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  14. This looks like the perfect summer dress, so I'm glad that distance has made your heart fonder and the pain a distant memory. I say go for it with the olive!!

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    1. Thanks! I have pretty much decided I WILL go for it with the olive!

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  15. whoah! great dress! i almost bought this pattern last time i was at joanns, but i'm trying not to amass a huge collection of patterns i have no place to store... will definitely pick it up next time! i loved that fabric too, and almost bought it more than once! i especially loved the colorful one. despite your frustrations, the fabric looks like a perfect choice!

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    1. Thanks! The bright one is my favorite too - I'm saving that one for last! I'll see how my second version with the olive green goes before deciding if I want/need THREE of the same dress!

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  16. Really cute! I love this on you-- it's a very pretty shape!

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    1. Thanks you, Stef! I admit I felt kind of snazzy when I put this outfit on!

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  18. Do it, do it, do it! I wanna see it in olive green!

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    1. Hahaha! Olive green is your color, isn't it? I've decided to do it, but I don't think it's going to happen straight away. You never know though - I often have trouble sticking to my list!

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  19. I just finished this same dress about a week ago. I've yet to blog it but I love it. Yours looks great!

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    1. That's funny! Great minds, eh? Hurry up and blog yours so we can see!

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