Monday, July 30, 2012

Starting the dress

The pattern that came with the course is Vogue 8648. It was possible to use another pattern, but this is quite nice with a lot of lines that make it possible to adjust for fit. I think I’m going to make the short sleeve version, though could decide to make it sleeveless. It will depend on the muslin.

Choosing the size was a nightmare of course: my bust is size 16, but I know I have a narrow back with a full bust. My waist is a size 12-14, and hipsize is a 18-20 (do I want to tell this?). In the end I decided to trace the 16 for the top based on the finished measurements indicated on the pattern. The muslin can be adapted later for the more narrow back I hope. If not a second muslin must be made. I usually trace my patterns, and this one is no exception. It makes it easier too if I have to go back to another size.
The skirt pieces I tapered down to a size 18. There are extra wide seam allowances, so if necessary I have space to play with. The finished measurements do indicate that it should be OK. I’m not completely fitting at the waist, as that will give the hips too much emphasis. For this Burda dress that worked well. The muslin will show whether that will work for this dress as well.

The indications for the finished width on the pattern. It was only after I started blogging that I realized this indication was there on most patterns. I was told by one of my readers after a remark I made. For this pattern the finished measurements for bust, waist and hips are indicated.

There’s someting strange though with the markings on this pattern for center front and back. Normally they are marked at the 5/8 inch line. Seeing the midrif front section I was wondering whether the seam allowances were different there. Susan Khalje hadn’t remarked on this, nor could I find an indication on the pattern or the pattern instructions. As you can see the markings are for 1/4 inch (first picture), half an inch (second picture) and the usual 5/8 inch on the last picture. I checked with the pattern parts that have to be sewn to these parts, and it seems that the markings are just off, the pieces itself seem to be correct. Strange!


Susan works with the actual seam lines (hurray for that, I don’t like to work with the included seamallowances on complicated pattern pieces, as I’ve mentioned before when making a Vogue jacket). This is as far as I managed this weekend. The muslin is cut and marked (with wax paper and by stitchting all the lines). The top of the muslin is constructed. On each part is written what it is. Later this muslin will be the pattern to cut the underlining from. To be continued.


  1. I have this pattern and yes the centre front on the waistband piece IS marked very strangely, almost like it was put in as an afterthought. Then I realized that in one of the views there is a little seam there.
    This is the sort of pattern where you have to pay attention to all sorts of details (which I know you will do!)
    I had problems with one of the shoulder straps being too long because I did not adjust for my uneven shoulders. I'll be making the dress again in my summer. It was a learning experience even without the class.

  2. I have this pattern too, but have never made it up. I will be watching with interest.

  3. I am so impressed that you are proceeding with this class. I too bought the course but haven't the faintest idea when I'll start. It will be a delight to watch your progress, especially since you are making almost all m own patten size decisions for me:-)

  4. I signed up for this course over the winter just to watch the videos. They are so well done! I don't know if I will ever get around to it but I look forward to seeing your dress evolve! Interesting about those seam markings...

  5. I am impressed that you are off and running already! What are you using for marking paper?

  6. I took this class earlier this year. It is by far my favorite class on Craftsy!! She is an excellent instructor. The wax paper has to be purchased at Richard the Thread. (I think I remember that correctly but its also on the referece list) I ordered some, it's expensive but really great quality. I haven't had the time to focus on the dress but will be making it soon!!

  7. I am looking forward to watching your progress! That pattern is very attractive, with the square neckline and all the midriff pieces.

  8. I made this dress too! I loved the course. I had quite some fitting issues to tackle...the bodice was way too big. this is my dress