Thank you, everyone, for your kind comments on my birthday dress! I am overwhelmed!
I had to travel for work on my birthday, and not the good kind of travel, either. I was off to Las Vegas for a week for some particularly painful depositions and knew I'd be working like crazy. However, I was determined to do *something* to celebrate my birthday, hopefully a nice dinner out on the town in between working before and after. I didn't know how silk jersey would travel, and plus the casinos are always so smoky and you have to walk through them to get to the restaurants, so I didn't want to bring my "real" birthday dress. Time to come up with a quick backup!
I flipped through my BWOFs and came across 12-2007-109, which looks sophisticated but is made up in a knit. That deep inverted front pleat is great for tummy disguising and I loved the shawl effect of the sleeves. Because this is a knit, it was super-quick to trace out and sew.
I sewed it up in a subtly metallic jersey from stash (purchased way back when from the $2.97/yd table at G Street). Unfortunately, because I was in a hurry I didn't spend much time with the fabric in doing the cutting layout, and didn't realize it has a bit of a nap. I cut everything out in the same direction, but it is a little rough-feeling if you run your hand down the dress, and smooth if you run your hand up the dress. It would be nicer had I run the texture the other way, but it isn't uncomfortable to wear as the bodice and strap are lined with a softer poly knit.
Although the description of the sleeves says "The wide straps of this gown are tied in front before being attached to the back, creating not just a pretty neckline but also cap sleeves," this is not true in any way. There is no tying. The sleeve is sewn as a continuous line after threading through the keyhole, with the seam hidden inside the tab at center back. Nothing complicated there.
So it's not any kind of actual twist, just a keyhole opening that you thread the strap through. The keyhole opening is drafted to be quite long. I shortened it some, but even still my bra shows through the opening a little (a flesh-tone bra helps).
The sleeves, alas, don't work as advertised. My metallicized fabric has a bit less stretch than your typical jersey, and is a bit stiffer, so I'm sure that has something to do with it. But unless you stand perfectly still without moving your arms the shawl sleeves are going to push up onto your shoulders. This makes the look a little less sophisticated and a little more Betty Rubble, but since this was for Vegas the less classy/more trashy thing was fine.
I just left the hem raw. I love that this is an option with jersey.
Despite working until midnight most nights, we did manage to take one night off and have a lovely dinner at Circo in the Bellagio. We had a smidge of a view of the fountains and the food was fantastic. I think there is more metallic clothing per capita on the Strip than anywhere else in the world (including a couple I saw in which the girl was wearing gold metallic leggings and the guy was wearing one of those tacky Ed Hardy shirts on which every line was limned in gold), so I fit right in.
This is another project photographed by Cidell, so there are some great photos! The pattern review is here.
BREAKFAST IN THE SEWING ROOM...
1 hour ago