Wednesday, August 28, 2013

McCalls 4769 ~ The Sew Weekly Reunion Challenge

I've been meaning to sew this dress since January 2013.  I don't know why I was so intimidated.  I guess I didn't want to ruin great fabric with the wrong fit.  


I came across The Sew Weekly Reunion while blog surfing and thought it was an amazing challenge; I jumped at the chance to participate.  It motivated me enough to make the dress so it is a win!  I don't take enough time to sew for myself, mostly sewing for the kids.  I'm happy this is pushing me to move toward making myself things too!


The Facts: 
I cut and sewed a straight size 12.  I wanted to do a 10 for the bodice but the pattern I had started at a 12.   I really stressed out that the bodice would be too big, but I trudged forward.  

 I followed the directions pretty much most the way through.  Step #34 I was wondering why the skirt back even had a center back seam.  This can be eliminated and cut on the fold.  After Step #35 I under-stitched all pocket seams where they join to the skirt and then after #36 I pinked all the pocket seams as shown below. 
Now when I got to the collar I thought I was prepared.  I've read many reviews on patternreview.com saying how the collar is a pain.  I followed the advice of a few and read through these instructions by Pleasant View Schoolhouse.  I also read through the pattern instructions a few times. You think I would get it and be good to go? No, I still messed up!  See picture below and continue reading...

Where the green arrows are you need to make sure those get sewn under the front facing.  This happens in Step #49 and is really awkward in how it lays with the dress and facing. This was the only part I messed up on after reading all the instructions and checking out that website.  

It was easy going after that.  I did sew the top button about 1.5 inches higher than the pattern called for. I had to add an extra button on the bottom to accommodate this shift upward. 
The bodice fits me but it is a bit big.  I ended up taking in 1/2 inch on each side of the bodice under the armpit and tapering out to the waist - this helped but it's still baggy.  The bust darts don't really line up correctly with my apexes but the patterned fabric helps mask that. I really needed to sew the bodice in a size 10.  

Also, the whole time I was sewing I was actually thinking it was going to be too small for me.  Then about halfway through it occurred to me that the button placket things attach to the facing - as in, the facing goes down the whole dress front on both sides.  I thought at first the button plackets folded in half.  The dress fit me better that way so when I added the facings it was too big. I hope that made sense!

Even though it is a tad big I will still wear it.  I put 10.5 hours into this dress and I don't care that the bust is big!  :-)

I also eliminated the armhole facings and used bias tape for those.  It didn't quite go smoothly but it worked in the end.  Next time I would stick with the facings. 


Fabric: M'Liss Kimono II Fan ~ quilting cotton from Hancocks. My mom gave me her Hancock Bonus Bucks at Christmas Time last year and I used one to pick up the materials for this dress.  3.5 yards for $24.66 (-$20 bonus buck coupon)= $4.66.  Dress calls for only 2.75 but I used almost all of the 3.5 yards?  I see Hancocks still has it in stock and on sale for $5.99/yard. They describe it as M'Liss Butterflies and Fans on Teal Cotton.  100% cotton, 44" wide


Notions: Thread - Dark Jade $0.42 on sale, Interfacing 1.5 yards- had in the stash est. $3.00, Buttons - Slimline Red $0.70 each x 3.  


Pantone Challenge colors: I guess I'm fashionable for once? My Pantone Fall 2013 colors used are Emerald, Samba - there may be a close resemblance to Linden Green as well.  This was all totally unintentional.  I really liked the fabric and my complexion makes me a jewel tone wearer so I went with it!

Pattern: McCall's 4769
 M4769
Year: Now OOP - but they still offer it for sale on the website.  I picked it up Jan 2013. However, it is ©2005 on the actual pattern



Time to complete: I would say it took me 2 hours to trace, cut, and interface the dress.  Then it took me 6 hours the first day of sewing and 2.5 hours today to finish it up.  Total: 10.5 hours


First worn: I've only worn this for the photos today but I plan to wear it Friday when I take the kids fabric shopping with me all day and out of town. (wish me luck on that trip!)


Wear again? It fits well and looks good so I plan on wearing this lots!  I plan on wearing this with a black cardigan when the weather turns but I will probably make another one with long sleeves, too.  


Total Cost: $10.18 - Awesome!
A successful me-made item always puts a smile on my face. 



~ Happy Sewing! ~ Kristin ~

12 comments:

  1. I love the fabric choice and collar, they really make the dress! Like you said, I don't think the fitting issues are too bad and sometimes it's nice to have some room!

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    1. Thanks Zoe! and yes, a little room is a nice change for once :)

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  2. It turned out lovely; the fabric is so pretty. I think the bodice fit looks good - maybe not as slim as you'd like, but definitely not saggy and ill-fitting.

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    1. Thanks Joy! I think we are our own worst critics :) Seeing the pictures helps me realize the fit is good and I don't need the bodice tighter.

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  3. I have this pattern and think yours is extremely pretty. Great fabric. http://cupandpenny.com/

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  4. Ooh, very pretty! The fabric is perfect fr this dress. Looks lovely on you :)

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    1. Thanks Ellen :-) It was one of those "speak to me" moments. I had the pattern in hand and then the fabric just jumped out off the shelf at me!

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  5. You shirtdress is very pretty and the fit looks perfect!

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    1. Thanks! It was so much fun to do this challenge

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  6. Hey, just stumbled upon this blog! I'm considering ordering this pattern but really want something with a lower neckline. Would it be relatively easy to alter this pattern to drop the neckline lower?

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    1. hi Julia! I think it would be doable. less easy because of the lapel part, but not too difficult. thanks for visiting!

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