Saturday, July 25, 2015

Cocktail Rebel - Butterick 5603 (sort of)

My second dress for the Cocktail Rebel event was made for, and worn, by my life long gal-pal Kassy. When asked what she wanted to wear to the event, she sent me this picture.

She wanted a high neckline, so looking through my pattern stash, I found Butterick 5603.


Originally, I had wanted to turn the skirt panels into box pleats, with gussets placed in between each at the waistline. After reading many reviews on this dress pattern, I constructed my muslin with the changes I wanted to make. As many  had previously reviewed, the fit through the waist was very poor. I ended up keeping the bodice, and scrapping the rest of this pattern. I drafted a midriff piece, then drafted my box pleat panels and gussets.

The pattern had a band and bow at the front neckline, but I ended up taking my contrast material and draped a faux-scarf. I also scrapped the underbust band, but kept the bow.

In lieu of the lining on the bodice, I constructed another shelf bra by duplicating the bodice and adding a 1" elastic band cut 1" short of Kassy's under bust measurement. An elastic bra hook was placed on the elastic band, at the side opening.

I sewed the shelf bra and dress together like a lining at the neckline, then top stitched. The arm straps were way too thin to construct as a regular lining and to be able to turn everything inside out like I would need to. Because of this, I kept the shelf bra and dress armholes together, and finished with single fold bias tape.

I would have taken more pictures during the construction of this dress, but this was one of those pieces I kept running into issues with. So many, in fact, I was not even sure I was going to be able to finish it in time. Many of these issues were due to my mistakes more than anything else. If you've been sewing for a while, that is just how some projects go!

Once I was on more solid footing with this project, I decided to add two scarves to the back, continuing the drape of the front neckline. I drafted the pieces, gathered them at the shoulders, and let them hang freely to the length of the dress. This was absolutely the perfect touch!

All the frustrations were worth it as she looked absolutely beautiful for our event!!

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