I have completed my first sewing project of 2012. I can feel that my sewing skills have improved loads in the year or so since completing the apple dress, though I'm still at a pretty basic level. Anyway, completing this means I can finally tick off a project that's been on my sewing list for, oh, eight months! One reason it's taken so long to come to fruition is that I simply couldn't decide on the "right" pattern for such a busy print. If you 'like' me on facebook you may recall I even considered going down a Mad Men early 60s sheath, but in the end the Deco era won out, and I think this pattern works well.
And yes, the lamppost outside my apartment is my new favourite photo prop.
The pattern instructions were very clear and easy to follow. In fact the only real problem I ran into was that despite doing a bodice muslin I managed to make it an inch too large on the waist, so I had to unpick and re-sew the side seam, which was a little fiddly since the midriff is topstitched to bodice and skirt. But other than that it went together pretty smoothly.
Pattern: Butterick 2592, from 1943. I have a weakness for patterns with shoulder gathers and fitted midriffs! Though disappointingly it doesn't make me look as svelte as the models on the pattern envelope.
Fabric: Liberty cotton/wool blend with a Deco-esque pansy print. The colours are a little obnoxious up close, but from a distance they blend nicely to burgundy. The fabric has a nice drape, though probably not quite enough for the gathers in the skirt, which really call for a lightweight rayon crepe de chine.
Alterations: Full bust adjustment (I'm not sure it was strictly necessary and I'm slightly worried it makes my boobs look enormous - but it does mean I can actually raise my arms above my head, which I can't in many of my vintage dresses!). I gathered instead of darting the sleeve caps to give the shoulders a touch of puff. I also straightened off the bottom edge of the midriff section (but didn't properly adjust the skirt accordingly - I tried, but didn't do it right - which is why the gathers fall a little weird).
Techniques: Using bias binding to face the neckline and sleeve hems; Hemming with seam binding; Interfacing the midriff (with curtain lining, since that's what I had hanging around - I use it for muslins) to stiffen it slightly.
Make again? Although I'm pleased with it, I probably won't use this pattern again any time soon - I have too many other patterns waiting to be turned into garments!