Have I made this legendary garment? Not yet, but here is an attempt in 3 stages. The pattern is Colette Georgia
Best version, #3 - The Teatowel dress
I like it a lot and have worn it every weekend since its inception. Its resemblance to a tea towel is mysteriously appealing to me.
You may notice that this does not look a lot like the technical drawing
This orange print version was originally straight from the pattern (other than 5cm lengthening of the skirt), and has pros and cons. I like the sleeve coverage, but it's gappy at the back bodice, pulls at the front bodice.
It was highly unflattering due to lack of waist definition until I added an internal empire waist casing and drawstring.
The fabric is a cotton sarong with a border print - I've used the border at the pockets and hem only as it was quite a thin border and a strong contrast.
Version 2: Cotton handwoven Sari
I made another version, using a lighter fabric, a souvenir handwoven cotton sari from Sri Lanka.
My adjustments were:
Narrow the back bodice
Full bust adjustment using the pivot method (side bust dart and lengthening bodice)
Add back skirt darts to reduce the gathering needed at the added outer empire waist casing
Apply neck facings to the front and hand embroider these and the pockets with cross stitch.
This is a lovely but temperamental fabric, being loose woven. Unfortunately in wear it proved a little transluscent.Even worse, the fabric is a little rough, so it clings to any petticoat in an unsightly manner. Unfortunately I only discovered this after I'd sewn a bias petticoat from the same fabric, and this petticoat can not be worn under any other garment either, due to grabbiness.
All the seams are french, but this was not sufficient. On its first wear, the fabric strained at the bust - despite fairly generous ease, and I had to repair this with additional fabric under the stitching.
To relieve some of the pulling, and to turn this dress into a nightie, I removed the sleeves, and again, I've worn this garment quite frequently, but only in the house. It is not even up to collecting someone at the train station and not getting out of the car!
The teatowel dress had a few advantages, the first one being that the fabric is thicker, although equally loosely woven. Due to this, I finished the pieces on the overlocker prior to constructing the dress.
Overall, I'm happy with the dresses, but am amused at myself for thinking that I could make a dress with minimal shaping that I would actually wear. Note to self- don't bother making dresses without waist definition!