Sunday, 6 November 2011

Vogue 8728 reproduction 1946 dress

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My third "new" dress pattern is a new favourite.

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I was inspired to buy this pattern by Erin at A Dress a Day. Despite her many posts about her lovely versions of the pattern I was a little worried about the possible bustiness and underarm exposure, which she talks about here and there in relation to this frock. The pattern calls for under 3m of fabric, and I thought it was worth a try.
I made the above version of the dress in a lightweight linen, in an oxford weave of pink in one direction and dark grey in the other, from Michael's Fabrics. I received this as part of a Zegna bundle I purchased in 2009. Lightweight linen is one of the recommended fabrics on the pattern envelope. I found it perfect for the pattern, and used less than 3m, making the skirt from one x 148cm width.
I don't think the dress looks too buxom (D). I did not make a FBA, and despite leaving out the shoulder pads (and not making my usual square shoulder adjustment), I do not find the armhole too deep. I turned the "sleeve" hem in further than instructed and assure you that no underwear became visible in the process.

I had considered using silk jersey for the dress (another recommended fabric on the pattern envelope) and made a trial version using possibly the worst fabric I have ever received over the internet,
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(beware of that butterfly print knit and the stripey knit, they are AWFUL)
an alleged cotton/lycra knit from Fabric.com, which was about the same weight as light silk jersey, but had no discernable recovery. I got what I paid for, at about $4 per yard. Fortunately the wovens I received in the same package, at much higher prices, are far superior fabrics.
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These are the "will I bother making this dress in real fabric" photos. I started with a size 12, according to my high bust measurement, and the awful knit version is large and droopy at the bust, back and waist. I decided not to start with a knit version, but to try a size 10 for the bodice and waist in the linen, which was another trial fabric, as it is not a colour I usually wear. I threw out the remaining butterfly knit. I did not think it would even make a good cleaning rag.

Going from the no-recovery knit to the linen, my sizing changes were not entirely smooth. After going down a size I then had to let out the waist a little by sewing skinny seams and adding bias binding for zipper attachment, but otherwise the fit was very good. I will taper out to a 12 at the waist for a woven, should I make this again, but a 10 would probably be OK in a knit (one size smaller than envelope measurements suggest)

I underlined the front waist with silk organza, another inspiration from A Dress A Day.
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I sewed the upper and lower bodice right sides together and topstitched rather than overlapping as in the instructions.
I used a regular zip in the side seam, hand sewn, as per the instructions. I don't think this looks terrific, I will use an invisible zip next time.
I bound the armscye/sleeve hems as suggested, before topstitching, but found that this made the hems stick out from the arms.
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I rolled them under by hand and used an invisible stitch to finish.
I overcast stitched by hand to reinforce the bottoms of the armscye, and the top of the side zip opening.
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I have cut out another one. I am breaking into the Liberty - I must really like this pattern.

24 comments:

Little Hunting Creek said...

I love this dress! It looks gret on you. I can hardly wait to see the 'good' fabric version

Gabrielle said...

Wow, this looks so great on you in the grey linen - just lovely! I hope the Liberty version is a success too.

I have this pattern in my "to do" pile but have been um-ing because I wasn't sure how it would really look - but you've convinced me I should make this one very soon!

liza jane said...

Ooh, liberty! I'm excited to see that version. I love the grey linen-- such a nice color.
I have some of that stripey knit in a different color. It's pretty icky feeling isn't it?

countrygirlcouture said...

Wow, this turned out gorgeous! I can't wait to see the liberty version. I've eyed Liberty fabrics, but am never sure how to use such a bold print.

Joy said...

I really love this! The bodice is so flattering, the waist piece is very nice, and I like the color too, even though it's a mistake to wear it myself. I'm inspired to move a similar pattern I have up on my list.

Sherry said...

Gorgeous!
I've just sewn a 40's pattern where a seam was supposed to be lapped onto the gathering too - I thought that sounded like the hard way to be honest, so I did exactly what you did! It must have been the usual way they did it back then.

littlebetty said...

This dress looks wonderful. My first attempt at this pattern was a fail, but maybe it was all about the fabric. I love the new photo styling too, very Carolyn inspired??

Mary Nanna said...

Pretty pretty dress - just the right fabric, just the right fit, showing off your lovely slim waist - you must be thrilled with this.

Mary Beth said...

Love this dress on you!

Janine said...

I can see why you like this dress so much - it is incredibly flattering - I think this will inspire alot of these dresses to be made since yours looks better than the drawing on the envelope. I love it.

Audrey said...

I liked all of Erin's versions and this dress and yours is great too. Very flattering and feminine. Can't wait to see it in Liberty fabric. I know this pattern is somewhere in my collection. Got to keep it in mind when the weather starts to warm up.

Bernice said...

The style of this dress gives you a very flattering sillhouette. It looks like the perfect addition to a summer wardrobe. I think you've pairing it with red shoes was an excellent choice.

Jane M said...

I've passed right by this dress but your version fabulous. This pattern deserves plenty of variations in your lovely fabrics.

Tanit-Isis said...

Wow, it's lovely! And shows off your tiny waist so well. I shall sit here and burn with gentle envy. What a pain about those knits, though...

SEWN said...

Gorgeous. I think I'm going to have get on this bandwagon too.

katherine h said...

Gorgeous! I can see why this is a favourite. I hope you get it to work in a knit as well. If I had only seen the pattern envelope I would have been suspicious of all the gathers, but this looks really lovely on you.

fabric epiphanies said...

Great dress. It really suits you.

Carol said...

I love it. I never really like this pattern from the envelope, but I like it now a real person has made it. That's another thing in the sewing queue ...

Carolyn said...

You look absolutely gorgeous! A really lovely design in a beautiful colour and the fabric looks very luxe.
I've just made a 1944 design too and the seams are all lapped onto each other and topstitched. Very strange, I did it as instructed; but like you I'm not sure I'm thrilled with this style of seaming ...

Sue said...

This dress so suits your figure - make more, it looks great!

tropicalthreads said...

I've seen that dress in the pattern books, but never really thought about how it would look in real life, so to speak.
Having seen it on you, I really love it! It is lovely and suits you so well.

I do like the grey linen too :-)

Pity about the knits. That butterfly pattern is very cute!

Sigrid said...

Really lovely, the greybwith the red is beautiful on you. Such a flattering dress.

MushyWear said...

I am very excited to see this dress made up in linen. It looks wonderful on you. I have this pattern and have been wanting to see another version made up. Yours is so inspiring. I need to get started on this one.

Karin said...

This is the best version of this pattern I have seen so far! And they've all been good. Something about the simple linen is just right. It's very flattering on you.