Sunday, 19 August 2012

Finished Project & Pattern Review: McCall's 6331 with a Grosgrain Ribbon Waist Stay.

As promised, here is a post of a finished project!
I have been in love with the black and cranberry/wine color combo for a long time, last year I made V1 (post here) with a slim skirt and lace trim on the hem. I wore it to my 2011 work Christmas party (pic) and got many compliments for it. Now, here is the Black and Wine dress, V2!




This is one out of two formal dresses I have to make for upcoming award nights in October and November. Both award nights will be held at the Palladium at Crown, a 'stunningly glamorous and elegant' venue... I cannot wait to get all frocked up, hair done and all!!! Exciting times! And of course I am very much looking forward to the food!!!! I want to wear the dress with black opera gloves and/or a wrist corsage (think Carrie Bradshaw, SATC) and a custom made kisslock purse in matching black fabric!


Last week, while at The Fabric Store's 50% off sale looking for "jersey" I came across this beautiful shiny-sparkly black polyester for $6/m!! I snatched up 2 metres right away!


After spending most nights on the couch watching mindless TV (I can't believe they brought Big Brother back to TV... I only watched it for 10 seconds... it is so SHIT...), I finally mustered up the energy to get started on the dress on Wednesday night. Once I got started I couldn't stop.








The outer shell of the bodice is polyester from The Fabric Store, Brunswick St. The lining is cotton sateen. Both fabrics stabilized with iron-on interfacing. I pinked the raw edges. Love the zig zaggy look! I didn't use my overlocker at all for this project.

Tricky part of this dress is still the bra cups, the concave/convexes are still challenging, but I am getting there slowly. Patience makes a difference.



The skirt lining is sunsilky polyester. I cut a slim skirt for the lining... so it's more like a petticoat/slip? I got this idea from my sewing teacher while making my M5850. She suggested it so that there would be less bulk around the waist. Also a bonus because it uses less the amount of fabric by half!! Kaching!

The dress is very fitted so to save me from broken zipper drama that I always seem to encounter with invisible zippers, I have used a regular dress zipper and added a waist stay. I handpicked the zipper, which was very therapeutic and the waist stay made the black inside look cute with a little pop of cranberry.






I have to be honest - this dress is actually too small for me. I *just* fit it. I have gained winter weight around the waist and my waist is 4cm thicker than my usual measurement. I have been trying to make an effort to eat better and exercise for the sake of my health... but it's been a real struggle. I simply love food too much. I am hoping that this dress will encourage me to lose those 4cm around the waist so I can wear it in October without worrying that the seams will burst. If that fails, I'll wear this dress in November. If that fails, then... f#ck. But I refuse to unpick!!!! I refuse!!!!!


For the hem, I researched how to do a narrow hem on my Janome overlocker, but I couldn't find the instructions. I followed the instructions in the manual but I couldn't get it to work! Grr. The lady at the store gave me a quick demo when I bought the overlocker but I can't seem to get it to work.


As an alternative, I did the narrow hem on the sewing machine. I simply folded over about 2-3mm of raw fabric and stitched it down, then I turned the hem up about 3mm and stitched it down. End result is gorgeous! I love it!!! This technique can also be used for delicate fabrics. Good to know for when I start sewing with chiffon or silk. I hemmed the lining the same way. This method also saved me from having to spend money on colored overlocker thread. Kaching!!!







Pattern Review:

Pattern: Melissa Watson for Palmer Pletsch McCall's 6331 (no halter strap), M5850 skirt, 
Size: 4 bust with A/B cups, 8 waist
Fabric:
  • 0.25cm polyester (bodice shell), 
  • 0.25cm cotton sateen (bodice lining), 
  • 1.2m crepe back satin (skirt), 
  • 0.60cm sunsilky (skirt lining)
Notions: Invisible zipper 14" (black), Gutermann thread (000, 910), interfacing, 1m grosgrain ribbon, bikini back fastener,
Time: 4 days, about 10 hours in total,
Cost: Fabric $14; Lining $10; Zipper $1; Grosgrain ribbon $2; Fastener $1; pattern, interfacing, thread from the stash so total is: $28
New Techniques used: 
    • Narrow hem on the sewing machine
    • Grosgrain waist stay
    • Handpicked zipper



I love the dress, if I had to pick out one thing I am not 100% happy with, it would have to be the skirt... it's a little too puffy around the waist where all the gathering is, I feel so pooofy... maybe if I iron it down a little? If I can fit into it comfortably by the time the award nights roll around I'll get photos of me on the night for sure!! I really shouldn't say "if I can fit", I am making it my mission! I need to give up those all those fob bread rolls and pork puff pastries. I know I am not a "fat" person, but at the moment I am a small framed person *with* fat.

I am ordering my custom made clutch from a friend from my sewing class and I'll do some research on how to make a wrist corsage. If anyone has tutorial on how to make one, please let me know :D

Other news on the sewing front:
  • I have finished the hem on the M5850 (sewing class project), I'll be putting some finishing touches on it during this week's class then I'm putting that dress to bed till Spring comes out of the closet,
  • Still shopping around for "jersey" for the Burda dress. I don't know if I should buy a plain or print jersey.
I heard via blogs and Twitter that there was a sewing blog meet happening yesterday in Melbourne, unfortunately I didn't attend due to other commitments but I heard it was a great turn out and heaps of fun. Wish I was there! Were you there??? Who was there??? Tell me all about it!



24 comments:

  1. The queen of the strapless dress strikes again. You get to go to TWO events at the palladium? Lucky thing you! This black and deep red colour combo suits you wonderfully :)

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    1. I can't wait!! I've never been to the palladium before but I have seen photos from previous events and it looks stunning!!!!! And there will be men in suits!! Woot woot ;)

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  2. Wow this dress is absolutely gorgeous! The colours go so well together, I love it! Your dresses keep getting better and better! XxxX http://thesecondhandrose.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Hey Rose! I absolutely love this colour combo, this is my favourite "red". Thanks for your kind words xxx

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  3. The black and cranberry look stunning. What a polished finish- love the handpicked zip!

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    1. Thanks Amanda! I'm really loving the handpicking too, I'm actually starting to love all hand sewing hehehe!

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  4. I love love love the sequined fabric. Was it hard to sew with? I have heard that sometimes they can jam the machine and break needles. I haven't read much about waist stays, did you have a tutorial or a blog that talked about them that you followed? It looks so good on you, well done!!

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    1. Hi Chris!! I don't know how to explain the fabric, but it's not sequinned.. it's like similar to delustered satin, but on the right side it has these "shiny" bits but they are embedded in the fabric, all smooth, so I didn't have any jamming issues.

      I've seen waist stays on heaps of dresses around the blogisphere and it seemed pretty straight forward. I actually added my waist stay last after the whole dress was finished I realised that I needed something to hold it up while I zip it up and also to take some pressure off the zipper. After I lose those damn extra centimeters it will be a lot easier to zip up!!

      I added the waist stay simply by stitch it down on to the lining. I was going to handpick it, buttttt I took the lazy way out :)

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    2. I am interesting too in waist stay:) So this is mostly for keeping waist line of dress in safety? I don't understand very well this moment%) Can you help?

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  5. This is adorable! You and your party dresses! They're always so cute!!!

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  6. Wow, you always make such glamorous stuff, lol! I'm still waiting for my sewing mojo aka sewjo to return.
    This is gorgeous- you're so pretty!

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    1. Hey Jo!! The hardest bit for me is to start cutting!!! Once I am on the machine and see it coming together I get motivated to keep going. I reckon you have down a big coffee then just do it! :P

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  7. It looks great! The bodice looks perfect, and your narrow hem! Awesome!

    I was at the meetup on Sat - it was great fun! You should definitely come next time!

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    1. I'll definitely come next time! Would be awesome to meet all you guys!

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  8. Wow! Your dress looks absolutely lovely, I love the colours, and the narrow rolled hem is sheer perfection! You are going to knock em dead at those awards evenings :)

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  9. This is utterly gorgeous - I love the fabric combination, and the colours are just right so you!

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    1. Thanks Juliet, I love the fabric sooooo much!! It's so different to plain black polyester :)

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  10. Black and wine is my favorite color combo too! I love that you handpicked the zip and used a waist stay...those are the touches that make a dress special! And I am a huge fan of that method of hemming.

    I have the same problem every winter, because all the layers I bundle up in make me less conscious of what I'm eating, somehow...

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    1. Yep, yep, I hear ya!!! In winter I cover up with scarves and cardis... stretchy clothes are the worst, the deceive you!!!! I have a huge wake up call when I tried on a RTW dress bought last year that was so loose on me last year it feel to my waist... I tried it on the other night, sans bra and it fit perfectly!!! Good news: I fit the dress which is really pretty. Bad news: I don't fit anything else in my wardrobe!! I haven't work jeans for months!!!!

      Ohhhh, we are like twins I tell ya!!! Twins!!!

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  11. Love the colour combos!

    I love events at the Palladium - I'm sure you'll have a blast :) Why two awards nights, though?

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    1. My team are sponsors of two building associations so we get to go to both :D I also have one in Wodonga in next few weeks but I;m not making a dress for the country folk haha

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