She is finished.
And I must be out of practice taking photos, because I’m having a hard time getting good ones, but these will have to suffice.
I don’t regret the length (2″!) I took out of the bodice, although in hindsight I could’ve taken out less and just shortened the straps more. It’s comfortable as it is, though, and the bottom of the waistband sits right on my (ridiculously high) natural waist.
There’s not much more to say about the construction (check out other posts here). Tasia’s instructions are lovely and simple; her sewalong, on the other hand, gives you the super-couture version, and I really like some of the tips she includes like staying the upper edge of the bodice.
The bodice seams are all enclosed (yay!). For the skirt, I added a light cotton lining, and used French seams for the sideseams and Hong Kong binding for the front and back seams. I bound the CF seam on the skirt before stitching. This was a Bad Idea. For one thing, I hate trying to stitch evenly along already-finished edges. Even if they’re just serged, the edges always try to scoot so they don’t lie directly overtop of each other (my tendency to use pins as little as possible may be a factor here, too), and it was way worse with the binding. For another thing, after carefully stitching and trimming, I realized I managed to put the HK binding on backwards, so the un-finished edge is visible on the inside. *headdesk*
After I had the entire dress constructed except for the back seam, I did a fairly thorough pin-fit to figure out where I wanted the zipper seam to fall. I wound up trimming a bit from the CB top, narrowing to nothing at the waist.
I waited until the zipper was inserted to bind the back seam. This creates a lovely finish of the sort K-Line would (I hope) approve, but when/if I ever have to replace the back zipper (which seems more of a when than an if, given how much trouble the invisible zip has going over the waistband), it will really, really suck.
All right, let’s see. Syo took some photos for me, only half of which came out hopelessly blurry.
Some of you may recall that I traced the skirt pattern to the full length of the size 16 (about an inch longer than the 6 I used for the rest of it), and then added another inch or so when I was cutting, plus a little more at the CB of the skirt, to make up for the 2 cm I removed above and below the waistband for swayback adjustment. This was all I could squeeze out of my 5m of 45″-wide fabric (that bodice is a fabric hog) but was still a pretty minimal length (for me), reaching my ankle but not brushing the tops of my feet, which is where I like a maxi to fall.
For the hem, I wanted to keep as much length as I could, so I made a nice, wide (4″) bias facing. I really like this as a method for hemming A-line and circle skirts. Just iron the bias in a circle first (basically pull on one long edge and shrink in the other, to get it into a curve) and you’re good to go. It also satisfies my tastes for nice, wide, satisfying hems. I think I only lost about 1/2″ of length here. Although that’s still more than I would’ve liked.
All right, I think I ran out of things to say before I ran out of photos…
So let’s just look at pictures
Hmm, I could’ve sworn I adjusted the exposure on this one. Bleh. I like the picture, though.
So, fall arrived last week: Monday (Aug. 29) the high was 30C, Tuesday it was 13. It’s finally creeping up again and the forecasts (which I trust about as far as I can spit) are promising highs in the upper 20s for later this week, including my birthday on Wednesday. So this dress is truly ready for summer’s last, last gasp.
Note: we are out on the river enjoying summer’s actual last gasp so I’m just going to hit publish! I’ll edit later to finish up links and stuff…