The A Dress

Earlier this year I said I would be naming each dress I made using the letters of the alphabet, check out this post if you missed it.

Great idea, I thought, but what I didn’t anticipate is that as well as continuing to enjoy learning to make dresses and discovering different techniques, I also need to keep on top of photographing and blogging my makes in order.

So, a smidge past the middle of April here I am at last with my A Dress, whilst the fabric and pattern for my H dress are already on the cutting table…

The A Dress is the Arc De Triomphe Dress, so named because of the fun Lewis and Irene fabric, purchased at November’s Knitting and Stitching Show. It’s a By Hand London Kim Dress, with the pleated rather than the tulip skirt. The bodice came out about a size too big, reminding me that I really need to learn how to grade between sizes for bodices and skirts. Instead, I quite crudely took it in on the inside. It fits better but still gapes a little around the neckline at the front. I’m also not sure that the princess seams follow my curves as closely as they should. Maybe a FBA would help? For the front skirt I could not work out how to use a directional print with the amount of fabric I had (4 metres!) so I joined two pieces which I don’t think is too obvious because of the busy print. When I gathered the top of the skirt I neglected to ensure that the seam was centred, so it’s not. One to remember for next time.For some reason, I chose my first make of the year to be a very summery dress, which is partly why it has taken me so long to get outside for photos. I like the dress, especially the skirt and the length. I like the shape of the bodice but I feel like I’d need some advice on fitting it properly next time. I think I will wear this dress on warm sunny days, though probably not for work because of the amount of flesh on display.


9 responses to “The A Dress

  1. Great fabric, a real conversation starter, I should imagine! What do they all think of your handmade clothes at work? Have you inspired others to take up dressmaking?

    Liked by 1 person

    • One or two people have mentioned they might give it a try but no one is anywhere near as addicted as me – sadly Nat from Threads & Bobbins left before we both really started sewing. I do love showing off my makes by wearing them to school, and I sometimes tell my class about it too 😊

      Liked by 1 person

    • Shemsall

      I work with ccmercer1982 and I am always very impressed by the dresses, tops and skirts she has made as are many others at school. I have made one or two tops but not really worn them to work as they aren’t up to the same standards. I would love to have more time for sewing.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Fab fabric! Perfect for this style if dress. About the fitting (tho not an expert!!) you could try going with your high bust measuring and then doing a fba for the extra space needed in the bust. That way across the back, shoulders and upper chest would fit better and there should be room for the girls too! 😃

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for the advice Ali, I bet you are right – I just need to dedicate some time to investigating fitting issues don’t I? I just find it all a bit daunting to be honest, but I am sure it would be worth it in the long run!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Maybe do a muslin. I usually don’t intend it to be wearable at all – just cut out the bodice, no facings and only 1 sleeve if there are any. It doesn’t slow the process down much, somethings it speeds things up as you know the pieces better when you sew up with the ‘real’ fabric. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely dress! Agree with Ali/Thimberlina’s suggestion above… Maybe just try it out with a toile in a largish scrap of something? Looove those shoes, too!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. corrineappleby

    This is such a pretty dress! Love the fabric. I have this pattern and haven’t made it yet but I’ve made a toile that has thrown up a few fit issues. Nearly there though..

    Liked by 1 person

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So pleased with my purchases from the @johnlewisretail sale today! 4m of Robert Kaufman denim + What was left of some @atelierbrunette cotton + some @makoweruk metallic spot. Plus some pretty she’ll buttons that were less than half price 🙌🏼 All came to a total of £36.50. Now to figure out whether I can use any of them for my #2018makenine plans 🤔 •
#buttons #makersgonnamake #imakethings #dressmaking #sales #shopping #bargains The light isn’t great but here’s my second @sewoveritlondon #soivintageshirtdress hot off the machine. This one is made using some chambray coloured cotton from @fabworksmillshop leftover from an @theavidseamstress #daydress I made quite a while ago. The buttons feel like quite a statement and I’m hoping they don’t detract from the dress. I sewed this up as a size 12 and it fits SO much better than the 14. •
#sewmystyle #sewoveritlondon #sewoverit #vintageshirtdress #chambray #sleeveless #dressmaking #imakethings #makersgonnamake #sewersgonnasew #holidaysewing #buttons The only fabric I purchased (so far) in the sales just arrived from @misformake ~ the mason jars is a brushed cotton and the floral (+ snails! 🐌) is a cotton lawn. I only have a couple of metres of each so I’m not sure what I’ll make yet 🤔
#goodpostday #happymail #fabric #sales #salebuys #endofrolls #endofbolt #makersgonnamake #imakethings #sewersgonnasew Finished! My first @sewoveritlondon #vintageshirtdress made with @dashwoodstudio #flurry fabric with 8 vintage red buttons. I cut out the paper pattern and made a size 14, but I think it’s come up a little large and now I’m regretting not tracing it off - which I nearly always do. I’m hoping I’ll be able to nip it in with a belt, as other than that I’m pretty happy with it. I would like to make a sleeveless version in a 12 to compare but I’m not sure how best to size down a pattern I’ve already cut 🤷🏻‍♀️
#soivintageshirtdress #dashwoodstudio #shirtdress #collar #handmade #Imakethings #memade #dressmaking #January Searching through my vintage buttons for 8 that are a suitable match for my almost finished @sewoveritlondon #vintageshirtdress 🧐
#buttons #vintage #retro #choices #preloved #recycle #reuse Last year I realised I could sometimes combine 2 of my favourite things: running and dog walking. Oliver is less compliant, unsurprisingly, but Wilf just loves to run. 
In 2017 we completed 3 #canicross races together, as well as several parkruns. He gets very excited at the beginning, particularly when there is lots of clapping or lots of other dogs. Wilf keeps me company on lots of training runs, both on his harness if we are running on the road and off the lead if we’re on the trails. He’s happy to go on very early or very late runs. He even looks disappointed if I head out in my trainers without him. 
I’ve already booked our first couple of canicross races for 2018, and this year I plan to log how many miles Wilfie runs too. He’s a good dog. •
#rescuedog #dailydog #instadog #patterdaleterrier #patterdale #patterdalex #patterdalecross #runningbuddy #runningdog #runningdogsofinstagram

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