Sunday, June 7, 2015

Pink Leopard Anniversary Chica - Vogue 1289

On Friday, Prof. R. and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary!  Since we had reservations at our favorite steak place, The Strip House, where Prof. R. proposed to me, I knew I needed to make something special.  Here is what I wore, Vogue 1289:

I have to say that Vogue 1289, and I got off to a rocky start.  I cut a muslin with my usual measurement: size 10 on top grading to a size 12 on the bottom.  However, the fit in the bodice was pretty bad. The gathered right side hung like a weird sling while there was extreme gaping on the left below the armhole.  I ended up taking up about an inch just below the front right shoulder gathers and darted out about the same on the left side.  Also, I didn't like how wide the gathered section looked at the top, so I shaved off about a half an inch to make it look more like the size in the pattern photo.

The dress in action at Lincoln Center the following Monday!

I was sure happy I made a muslin to test the fit.  I actually ended up making two muslins to check that all of my adjustment would work.  However, what I regret not testing was the lining.  In this pattern, the lining pieces are completely different than the outer fabric pieces and are princess seamed.  I thought if I simply pinned out the excess along the edges to mirror the outer pieces, all would be golden.  However, this was not the case.  On the left side with the small spaghetti strap, the lining keep popping up whenever I tried it on.  After much trial and error, I realized that the lining was too large on the inside princess seam.  Once I took that in and created a small (visible :()  tuck the lining seemed to stay put.  I also sewed a stay tape on the inside of the left side hoping that this would help keep it snug against my body and not expose my bra.  It worked somewhat, but I think I may tack the two sides together on the inside, so I won't have to worry.  While we were at dinner, I did keep looking down and pulled on the dress whenever I felt it moving too far down.  Classy, huh?  I underlined the bodice lining pieces with stiff sew-in interfacing that I had in my stash, as opposed to hair canvas, as the pattern suggests.  This worked well to give the bodice shape.

The not so nice looking inside lining :(

On to the skirt.  Since the only seam on the skirt is in the back, where the zipper is, you can only adjust from there.  In order to get the fit just right, I had to baste in the zipper several times for the bust adjustments (before I attached the skirt) and again after I had attached the skirt.  I ended up using an inch seam allowance for the skirt.  At one point, I went back to the pattern to double check that I hadn't left off a pleat somewhere on the side back, but no, the sizing is just off.  Maybe I should've sewn a size smaller than my usual, all around.  However, the lining for the skirt fit just perfectly, without needing any adjustments, and was sewn with the usual 5/8" seam allowance.  Kinda strange...

The pink leopard fabric is from my stash and is some type of acetate, just a bit heavier than a lining fabric.  I purchased this at Fabrix in SF prior to moving to NYC.  It's one of those types of fabric that if you have the least little microscopic tear in a nail, the fabric will catch on it and create a pull.  I have a nail file in my sewing supply drawers for just this kind of fabric, and it was used quite a bit during construction.  The rhinestone strap comes from one of the trim shops in the garment district.  I just hand sewed it to the self fabric strap and presto, instant bling!

Close up of the rhinestone strap

Overall, I'm happy with how the dress turned out, despite the fight it was to make it.  Would I make it again?  Probably not.  I feel like my wardrobe doesn't really need another one of these dresses, and I have so many other dress patterns I'd like to sew.  But I do feel like I achieved an elegant look with a bit of fun, and that is what I was hoping to create.

So, I wore this out to dinner with the rhinestone and pearl earrings I wore when we got married along with a recently purchased rhinestone bracelet.  Look what I came back with wearing around my neck:

Prof. R.'s 5th anniversary gift to me are these lovely black pearls!  I was stunned, to say the least.  They're just beautiful.

Well, I'm off to sew outfits that coordinate with black pearls.  Hasta pronto!

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