Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Finished: BSM 06/2008 #128
This dress came with a few challenges. First was the band placement. Since the high-waisted band echoed my high-waisted body and I thought it would not be a challenge. But, I'm large-busted in addition to being high-waisted. My bust would raise the band even higher. If ever a pattern cried out for a muslin, this was it! Just as I expected, the muslin told me I needed to lengthen the bodice. It also told me I need to increase the bust circumference. This lead to the second challenge.
I'd forgotten how to make pattern adjustments to princess seams and I no longer owned the book, Fitting Finesse (Zieman, 1998) that addressed how to make those adjustments. The simplest, albeit not the best, solution was to order another copy of Fitting Finesse. Luckily, I found a copy at Alibris for $2.45 ($6.44 including shipping – the shipping cost more than the book!).
The decorated waistband presented yet another challenge. I wanted to duplicate the beading shown on the model, but I couldn't find large, flat beads in a matching color. So, I chose smaller beads and used decorative chain stitching to fill up the space. I was torn between tone-on-tone and contrasting beads. I chose tone-on-tone because that's my personality, but all those beads I sewed on one by one are barely visible.
Here's what I love about Burda Magazine instructions (she said sarcastically): 60% of the construction was condensed into the first sentence – "Stitch side front and side back seams on skirt and bodice of dress." Once you've done that, add the waist band, sew the shoulder and side seams and the dress is practically finished! Then, the instructions say: "Sew lining as dress." Everything you need to know is there, but I'm amazed so much of the instructions are contained in two sentences.
This dress required more work than I've done in quite a while. I sewed the lining to the zipper by hand. Each and every bead is sewn on and back stitched to make it more secure. Once I found the rhythm to the bead sewing, it went reasonable quickly. I enjoyed working on it and it gave me a chance to take my sewing outside on the porch. I wish I'd spent more time fitting the bust. The muslin fabric fit differently than the linen, so the bust is a little bigger than I expected.