Sunday, April 13, 2008
B5179 or How to Over-Complicate an Easy Pattern
As I mentioned, I got lots of sewing done yesterday. This dress was item # 3. Described as a Fast & Easy, it really should have taken no more than 2 hours including cutting. But ask me how long it took me. "How long did it take you, Bonnie?" Oh, probably 5 hours and I almost ruined it!
The dress is Butterick 5179 and I made view C although I added the contrast band from View A and used the same contrast fabric for the yoke. The pattern was easy to follow but I added a little time after deciding the challis I was using was a bit too sheer and needed a lining. I cut out the smallest size and it still came out like a tent.I know the dress is sort of a flowy dress but what I got was WAY bigger than the picture indicated. Mistake # 1, didn't make a muslin.
No problem, I thought. I'll just take it in a bit at the waist to give it some shape and reduce the volume. I'll just wing it. Mistake # 2, don't wing it. Always measure. I ended up with a good waist size but it jutted out awkwardly at the bottom - I didn't have a cleanly graduating seam because I didn't measure. Plus, somehow I distorted the band at the bottom so it didn't line up with the side seams. I have no idea how that happened. Oh, did I mention, all my seams were serged at this point? Ugh. Mistake # 3, don't serge until you've done the final basting.
So, I laid the dress out and drew a clean seam on both the dress and the lining. And serged it. Tried it on and realized it was too tight! Mistake # 4, see Mistake # 3. Crap, by this time I'm seriously losing interest in this "Fast and Easy" dress but I want to wear it to the cheer banquet this afternoon so I persevered. I realized I had some extra room in the back center seam so I undid the band on the bottom (for the 4th time) and opened up the back seam, adding some width that way.
Basted it all together and WHEW, it fits although it's definitely not perfect. It's a little shorter than I wanted but that was because I re-serged the bottom band several times and lost length each time. The upside is the zipper turned out perfectly and the contrast yoke matched up perfectly.
So moral of this story is DON'T CUT CORNERS. You would think I would know this after admiring so many expert sewers but I got impatient. (My normal M.O.) I will actually make this dress again in the sleeveless version but I will alter the pattern up front to get the fit I want.