I haven't made a frock for about ten years, probably because long zippers scare the bejeebers out of me. Yes I am aware of the fact I have made hundreds of zippered pouches (and three skirts), but they use 8 inch zips and a dress uses a 24 inch one. I get a bit "Hold me, I'm scared" and sweaty all at the same time when faced with the task. This dress did not disappoint in the scary zipper department.
The zipper mainly got scary because I used a cotton fabric which had a touch of elastane. Elastane is stretchy and that gets scary when the fabric wants to go in different directions when sewing on a zipper. It all turned out OK though, because once I'd removed the basting stitches in the zipper opening, I ironed it really well (one of the reasons I only use cotton thread is that it doesn't melt when you are getting fierce with the iron). Result = good looking zip. Not perfect, but I don't do perfect so that's OK.
I used the Burda 8379 pattern for the first time ever. It looks pretty much like the photo indicates it will, however the measurements were off and instead of the hips having 3 inches of ease, I had to let a lot of seam out of the waist and hips just so it would fit nicely. I love the vintage look of the pattern - the sweetheart neckline and wide shoulders and self sleeve have that 1950s house dress look, but without the waistband. I'm going to make it again, but I might make the waist and hips a size bigger, and the neckline a size smaller. I'd also like to experiment with thin sashing on the waist.
I bought the fabric in Cabramatta a few years ago when I went to Sydney on a TASDA trip. It was $2 a metre at one of those crazy indoor/outdoor fabric shops where you wave to the Vietnamese man from the outside of the store and he comes out with a one metre ruler and cuts the fabric straight from the bolt and takes your money. Sure beats standing in the queue at Spotlight.
And while we're on the topic of dresses, did anyone else spot the fab dress Therese Rein was wearing the other day at the reception for the cricketers at Kirribilli House? It was so very Betty Draper.
(Images from Getty Images)
Now - what to sew next? I still have two and a half days of staycation, heaps of fabric and another day or so until the Tessuti shipment arrives. A blouse? Another skirt? Or perhaps I should just go and watch the tennis...