Thursday, September 10, 2009

BWOF 11-2008-111 Pleat Neck Dress & 06-2009-151 Obi

Life has really been getting in the way of blogging lately. I've been working on this post for two weeks! I had to go out of town for work last week. I assumed I'd be able to blog in the evenings, but working until midnight sort of put the kaibosh on that plan. Ugh. I was so happy to get home.

And on Sunday I'm leaving for Spain!!!!! I am so excited. I need a vacation for sure. Work has seriously eroded my sewing time so I won't have an entirely new wardrobe, but I will have one or two new pieces.

If anyone has any fabric store recommendations in Barcelona, please let me know! I'll be there for a week. Then I'm off to Madrid, Cadiz, and Sevilla where it will be too whirlwind to get any fabric shopping in, I think (but I suppose it wouldn't hurt to be informed...)

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When I got the silk/nylon crinkly shiny green fabric I'd found at Paron in NYC home, I had two thoughts. (1) Must.sew.now. And (2) I think this is home dec? Not that #2 bothered me, just made me think I should go to home dec more often.

I immediately made up a skirt and a dress. I went back through my BWOFs (I know it's Burda now, but you'll always be BWOF to me, baby) and stumbled on 11-2008-111. It looks like nothing in the photograph, just a jumble of shiny, print satin and a faux fur capelet, but the line drawing shows that it's got a very on-trend pleated neckline and a fairly simple silhouette, perfect for the fabric to be the star.

111Thumbnail

I am thrilled with the result. It has enough interest, but isn't weighted down with bells and whistles.

SBAThe shaping in the front bodice comes only from the pleats at the neckline, so I was stumped when tracing and cutting as to how to do an SBA. I decided I'd figure it out in sewing and the answer became obvious when it was basted together and the waistline was sagging. You can see my orange marking to indicate how to shorten the bodice.

The original design calls for the skirt to have inverted pleats spaced evenly from center front. However, I thought it would be more in the style of the dress to move them to center front. It has a bit of the same maternity problem as Butterick 5321 and absolutely must be worn with a belt or I look like I have no waist, but I think for the fabric the style works. If I make it again in a more conventional fabric I will probably place the pleats as drafted.

Cheater French SeamsAfter that, everything was smooth sailing. To get nice looking construction and ensure the fabric wouldn't end up shredding at the seams (silk nylon seams like a tough blend, but silk always seems prone to shredding) I put in French seams. I discovered--well, I'm sure everyone was already doing this--a cheater method that makes them so much easier. I unthreaded the left needle (yeah, I should have taken it out but whatevs) and used the serger to sew the first seam. My problem with French seams has always been that no matter how close to the edge I sew the first seam I always get some kind of seam allowance crap poking out of the second seam. Not so with the serger seam! The serger trims off all the crap and makes it nice and tidy to turn in and sew the second seam. I may do French seams more often now.

LiningIt turns out this silk-nylon blend is very scratchy, which is what makes me think it's home dec rather than fashion fabric. So I wanted a comfortable lining that was substantial enough to stand up to the scratchy fashion fabric without getting worn holes in it. I searched through stash and came up with a cotton I'd gotten at Hobby Lobby a couple of holiday seasons ago while visiting my family in Texas. It is a crosswoven turquoise and dark blue that was gorgeous on the bolt but after I washed it the sheen was lost and it was too thin and flimsy to be suitable for much. But it was perfect for a lining.

In order to give the front neck pleats some body, I stitched the shoulder seams of the bodice fashion fabric and lining, sewed them right sides together at the armscyes (topstitching afterward), turned them right side out and then treated as one at the neck. The pleats at the neck are much more distinct than those at the waist, where the fashion fabric is separate from the lining. I finished the neckline with bias tape (sacrificing this skirt, which was just too wrinkle-prone to wear).

As I said, this absolutely must have a belt, and luckily I had already made a gorgeous obi and the colors look fabulous together.

As I forgot to tell Cidell before she made hers, I shrank the pattern along every dimension:

Obi Pattern alterations

The pattern comes in 36/38 and 40/42, so I knew I'd needed to size it a little as I am generally a 36 at the waist. Here are the changes I made:
-Moved CF 1.5 inches (and because this is cut on the fold that means I shortened the front piece a total of 3 inches)
-Narrowed the front piece along the vertical axis by two inches at CF, tapering to nothing by center back (on the side/back piece)
-Ties 27" long

This was designed to be made of leather and unlined, but I was using my tie silk from the Fabric Mart bundle and it needed to be lined. I chose a bronze silk dupioni from stash (it has previously made appearances in Butterick 4985 and BWOF 06-2008-105 and is nearly gone). I interfaced both halves with heavy interfacing.

Reversible Obi BWOF 5-2009-151 I sewed the side seams, leaving a slit in both lining and fashion fabrics on one side, sewed the ties to the ends, and then sewed all around the edges. I turned the obi right side out by pulling the ties and then the body through the slit. Then I turned in the seam allowances at the slit and topstitched it closed, as you can see in the photo.

I'm a huge fan of the way it turned out, and have a red and black version planned. I'd been wanting to make an obi-style belt for a while and knew it would be a very simple matter to draft my own, but I never got around to it. Thanks BWOF!

All photos of the dress are here and the obi photos are here and the pattern review is here.

34 comments:

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

This is a cute dress on you and I love the color! Have a good time in Spain!

Claudine said...

Great dress! It looks fabulous on you, and I like the changes you made to the pattern. In Barcelona, there's a nice fabric store called Ribes y Casals. It won't change your life or anything, but it's well-lit and well-stocked. http://www.ribescasals.com/

amber said...

The dress is great, but I particularly love that obi belt!! I really want one. :)

Trudy Callan said...

Stunning. I love the color.

cidell said...

Sigh. You're leaving again! At least you're going to Espana! The dress is awesome and I can't wait to see what else you debut!

McVal said...

That fabric is way cool! It looks like wrapping paper just a bit! Very nice pattern too!
Bon Voyage!

Birgitte said...

That looks AWESOME; the shape, color, texture, it's all perfect and fits you to a t. You will turn heads in Spain for sure. Have a wonderful time, it is a fantastic country with amazing people.

Myra said...

Very nice dress and belt. Ask Paco for recommendations on shops, I am sure he has some favorites.

Lindsay T said...

Bueno! I bet this color is fantastic on you. Have a great time in Spain; my lucky daughter is going to Madrid and Barcelona in the spring.

Pamela said...

Central Barcelon has two very nice fabric shops - cannot remember the name of either, but can tell you they are both located across the street from each other in the area just north of the Barri Gotic, east of Passeig de Gracia, and South of Carrer d'Arago. If you look on a Barcelona map you will get the general vicinity. Central Barcelona is not overwhelmingly large, the people are very warm and I believe they can steer you to these two shops. Both shops have terrific sales in January and June (keep in mind for your next trip!) and carry very beautiful fabrics. As an aside, do not leave Barcelona without expriencing a "Swiss" (Spanish version of hot chocolate) and Sangria. Recommendations for the sangria are at a very funky cafe in the Barri Gotic called Cafe Schilling (Calle Ferran 23, a great place to go day for coffee, night for sangria. In Seville, consider a few colorful cotton espadrilles - there are several stores there selling in all colors at about $8.00 pair. Seville is the cheapest place for espadrilles, but shops close at noon on Saturday and all day Sunday. BTW, I am leaving for Dublin in 6 days, do you have any travel tips related to fabric/pattern shopping there? I did get some recommendations from Fehr Trade blog, am open to any other suggestions.

Pamela said...

Forgot to leave my email re: Dublin tips. It's: byyzantinegrl@yahoo.com

thanks,

Pamela

Shannon said...

Very pretty dress - I love that shade of green!

mjb said...

Check this dress out that has the same pleating! http://fashioni.st/2009/09/candice-2nd-street-sf.html

Vicki said...

How good does that look on you? Fabulous. Great colour and the obi is a perfect accessorie

Cindy said...

Love the color on you and the obi is to die for. Great idea about the serger use on french seams. Have a wonderful trip!

Carol said...

Love the dress and love the colour; looks great on you!

AllisonC said...

Oh I absolutely love it - thank you for bringing the pattern to our attention, you're right I didn't really notice it in the magazine. Have a brilliant time in Spain, no fabric suggestions but hope you manage to find some Patrones. BTW Kaibosh is one of my favourite words!

Brenda said...

Glad you are back. Missed you much! Darling dress (as usual)

Sew4Fun said...

Lovely dress and obi. Enjoy Spain!

lin3arossa said...

Stunning outfit! Look at BWOF 9/2008 for store recommendations. Enjoy!

senaSews said...

The color suits you perfectly. Beautiful dress!
Enjoy your time in Spain and please show us your fabric finds!

Lisette M said...

Very pretty dress, that shade of green looks beautiful on you. You should contact Paco (pacoperaltarovira.blogspot.com) he's a tailor very active in the blogging community who I'm sure knows fabric sources in Barcelona, where he lives.
Don't miss El Museo del Prado in Madrid.

Sheri said...

I missed you, Slapdash! Great dress. Enjoy your vacation.

Barbara at Cat Fur Studio said...

Simply gorgeous. Perfect marriage of fabric and design. And beautiful construction.

A Sewn Wardrobe said...

I love this! I think it's my favorite so far of all the items you've made this year. But, then again, I'm a total dress-a-holic. Have a great time in Spain. Didn't you just get back from Asia?? I'm an attorney too, but I'm in an office all day. Is your dept. hiring? ;)

Teddylyn said...

Really cute dress and I love the color--looks great with both belts--I especially like the obi version. We were in Barcelona in May--didn't find fabric, but all of the newsshops on Las Ramblas have magazines--Patrones, Burda, etc. Have a wonderful time!

Lynda in LV

Adelaide B said...

I love this color of green. It makes me happy.

Little Hunting Creek said...

Beautiful dress! I love that color on you. Enjoy Spain (I am so jealous!)

Linda said...

That is a cute dress. Love the green and looks great on you. Like the obi with this dress as well as the narrow belt. Enjoy your trip to Spain!!

Sue said...

Very stylish and what a great colour!

rosanne said...

I love the dress! The fabric is lovely and unusual - just like you!
Can describe how you did the seaming with the serger? My postpartum days find me lacking in spacial understanding and memory :P

Have fun in Spain!!!

LORETTA said...

THIS IS ABSOLUTELY MY FAVORITE DRESS IN A WONDERFUL WARDROBE. THE OBI BELT IS AN INCREDIBLE ADDITION, BUT THE VIEW WITH THE GOLD BELT IS A KNOCKOUT AS WELL. YOU LOOK FANTASTIC IN IT. OH TO HAVE YOUR SMALL WAIST.

McVal said...

I left you an award on my blog!

mochimo said...

I like the dress and the fabric and the color! And I really like how it looks with the obi belt. I also made this dress but wore it only once because it doesn't really feel like "me". I'll try it with on obi belt. And maybe I'll also shorten it (if I find the inner strenght to tackle that hem again :-/ )