25 March 2016

Houndstooth Lilou Dress

This is the last pattern from the Love at First Stitch book and the one which I was really keen to make as its the pattern in the book which I think most matches my personal clothing style. I opted for the pleased skirt version over the gathered one as I think that pleats flatter my shape a little better, at least in a more structured fabric. This dress is made with all my style points ticked: Cute little sleeveless dress with a fitted bodice, monochrome (everything has to be monochrome at the minute!) and a punky hounds tooth print. There is a massive error in this dress though. I'll talk about it later but I wonder if you can spot it in the meantime. The dress as a whole does make me very happy though.

The fabric is a gorgeous large hounds tooth print viscose which again I bought from Croft Mill. I realise it looks monochrome but its actually a very slight off white and dark purple weave but you might as well call it black and white, its about as damn near. You are probably wondering if I ever buy any fabric from anywhere else but here or eBay but the truth is Croft Mill just have this brilliant knack of finding fabrics which suit my taste. They have a nice mix of different types of dress fabric, so there is usually something for every occasion, they manage to find lots of interesting prints which you don't see the same in every fabric shop, and finally their prices aren't crazy. (You just made me go check out their newly stocked section and I'm already coveting a load more fabric from them and Ive got at least 4 in my sewing pile already!)

For the lining I used some cotton fabric from Makower with a cute scissor print on. Now this is a total copy from the book as Tilly's version also has a red version of this fabric as a lining, but the truth is I've had half a meter of this in my stash for forever and never had a project for such a small piece so it was fate really. The cotton does react differently to the viscose but it has helped the give the bodice a bit of structure which is better, whilst the skirt still flows beautifully because of the drape of the viscose.

I made a lot of alterations to this dress, and its still far from fitting well. I cut a size 3, did a 1.5 inch bust adjust and then added a small back adjust. The small back adjust made a huge difference to the fit there and I'm really glad I tried it. It will definitely be doing that again. However once it was sewn there was a lot of room in the waist still and there is far too much fabric in the back so I ended up re-sewing the side seams. So now I am thinking that for one bodice piece I really need to make all the following adjustments: full bust, small back, small waist and sway back! It's probably time I took my sister up on her very kind offer to help me and my mum make a body block.

There are a lot of things I really tried to do right with this dress, especially given the print, that just didn't work out. I made a muslin which seemed ok, but turned out not to be so great. I was so particular to cut with the print and pattern matching in mind, especially where the dress and bodice meet, but I made a glaring obvious mistake and sewed the pleats on the wrong side of the fabric. The front skirt is actually wrong side out (thank god for viscose!) but it means the print is reversed and that there was no way I could pattern match down the front. I actually don't think its that obvious to spot but its really annoyed me. On the plus side at least the print runs in a straight line so that I am very grateful for.

That being said I really like it and I figured that if I had bought this dress in a shop the fit wouldn't be great, the pattern wouldn't match and given how much I paid for the fabric its a bargain. I really do need to get this pattern matching thing sorted out though. The bottom line is that I really like the dress pattern so I will definitely be making it again, I just need to work a bit harder on getting it to fit perfectly. I am doing really well at getting closer to my pre-preg weight though so I think I will give it another month and then work on really getting this pattern to fit, as I can see me having a few versions of it as a wardrobe staple.

Did you manage to spot the mistake?


1 comment

  1. I would not have seen any mistakes in a million years! To me this just looks like a beautiful dress that really suits you.


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