Sunday, November 4, 2018

Another Vogue 8379 - Tropical Edition!

The second Vogue 8379 I sewed up had some improvements, and some failed experiments. See the first one here.

My first version had a slightly stretched out neckline, so for this one, I inserted clear elastic along the neckline between the main fabric and the facing. I think this is a solid idea, but I stretched the elastic a touch too much as I inserted it, so I have some resulting wrinkling along the neckline. It mostly gets stretched out by wear, but I wouldn't call it an improvement.

Selfie of me in my turquoise palm print Vogue 8379, showing the slight wrinkling along the neckline resulting from overly tight elastic insertion. Also, there's a lovely houseplant jungle behind me.

To combat the hard-to-ease turn-and-fold hem, I made it narrower, which also backfired. Easing a narrower hem resulted in fewer lumps and bumps of excess fabric, but also a fairly flippy hem that needs regular ironing. This is probably not helped by this being a 100% cotton jersey, as they are prone to curling.

To help with the ties crunching up, I interfaced these ones with tricot interfacing. They are definitely stabilized, but they've got no stretch now, so they can be a bit constricting about the waist.

Me in a turquoise palm print Vogue 8379, facing the camera in front of a weathered wooden fence.

I do like this fabric a lot, even though it also performs in a more challenging manner for this particular make. This is a Max Mara cotton jersey knit with a palm print in black and turquoise. I absolutely adore the print. This fabric is 100% cotton, so it only has 20% stretch, and it's all mechanical stretch at that.

So what would I do next time? I would make this dress again, as I love the pattern. I would select a fabric with some spandex content, so it's a bit stretchier. I would skip interfacing the ties, which just made them less stretchy. I would stabilize the neckline again, but I would not stretch the elastic as I sewed. I would try a third hem option, and create a deep hem facing to avoid both the easing issues and the flippy narrow hem issues.

As it is, this dress has become a regular in my wardrobe, in spite of its flaws. Hopefully the third time is the charm, and my next one is just right!

Me in a turquoise palm print Vogue 8379, facing away from the camera, in front of a weathered wooden fence.

Me, looking off to my left in a turquoise palm print Vogue 8379. I'm standing in front of a weathered wooden fence.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Skopelos Floral Vogue 8379

Every November, I think about participating in NaNoWriMo for a hot second, but I never do it. And I'm not doing it this year either! But I thought challenging myself to actually write a bit more was a good goal, so I'll be trying to actually use my blog this month. Expect to see a lot of things that have been in the rotation for quite a while.

Me in a blue and white striped knit Vogue 8379 wrap dress with large (roughly 4-inch) pink and red poppies printed over the stripes.

That being said, here's my first Vogue 8379! I now have two. This one is made from an Art Gallery cotton jersey called Skopelos. It was a great fit for a wrap dress. Art Gallery jersey has a nice amount of stretch, great opacity, and a beefy drape that falls fairly smoothly over curves.

Back view of my Vogue 8379, with horizontal stripes on the bodice and vertical stripes on the skirt.

Me on a street corner in my Vogue 8379 wrap dress.

You do have to watch out a bit for curly edges, but that is pretty typical for cotton-lycra jerseys. To help with this, I used Wonder Tape to stabilize the hem. It helped hold things in place, but I still think I might change up the hem next time. This pattern is a turn and fold hem, which I usually like for knits. However, the skirt on this wrap dress is essentially a circle, so there's a fair amount of excess to ease into the hem using this method. I might try a knit facing next time.

My favorite thing about this make is the pleats you build into the bodice. They disappear a bit in the final make, but they also accommodate curves, so I didn't have to do an FBA on this dress AND it fits great!

Bodice of wrap dress, with no skirt attached, showing two pleats coming up from the waistline to create extra volume near the bust.

One tricky aspect to this make - I let the neckline get stretched out a bit while sewing the facing on, which is a little difficult to avoid. You have to sew a long diagonal stretch for the neckline, and it's a little dicey trying to get the tension just right to avoid stretching anything. Once steamed and laundered a few times, it mostly went away, and the tension in the fabric from tying the wrap dress deals with any lingering issues, though.

Selfie of me in the Vogue 8379 dress from above, with a good view of the neckline. There is minimal visible stretching when it's actually being worn.

 The only other thing that was a bit tricky was also very fun - stripe placement! I spent a while looking up striped wrap dresses online. I was originally planning to have the stripes run horizontally on the skirt, but a search of RTW striped dresses revealed that vertical skirt stripes are way more common. I went with the general consensus, and I'm very pleased. I get a lot of compliments on how the stripes are laid out on this dress. Is it a weird compliment every time? Yes. Does it make me feel like I nailed it? Also yes.