There’s so much to love about the sewing and design process: dreaming up new garments to make, investing time into perfecting the pattern, carefully stitching the pieces together–I could go on. But I think we can all agree that the best part is seeing the finished product. There’s nothing quite like creating something with your own two hands and experiencing the satisfaction that comes with it. For me, it’s also a thrill to see the design elements and colors come together. In college, one of the most important things I learned was the importance of cohesion in a collection, and that theory has stuck with me since then. Every once in a while, I will whip up a stand alone project, but most of the time I like designing mini collections with coordinating components in a thoughtful color story.
Over the past few weeks I’ve posted my list of projects for fall, and I finally have quite a few things finished. (Cue a happy dance!) First up is Vogue 9202. This pattern had me the moment it was released. Jewel neckline, short sleeves, fit and flare silhouette, interesting seams–yes, just yes. I went with view B in a gorgeous fall floral sateen from Promenade Fine Fabrics in New Orleans. You find the fabric here. I should also mention that I thought I had all my autumn colors picked out until I saw that fabric. It changed everything. I mean, how perfect is it for fall?!
I carefully measured the pattern, but I did not sew a muslin–which is not unusual for me. Sometimes I do them, sometimes I don’t. Anyway, the dress ended up being about 4″ too big in the bodice, so I took it in at the center back seam. I had to recruit Ty to help me, as this would have been an impossible task to do by myself. (I know those pins are kind of all over the place. Don’t worry–I measured carefully and trued my pattern.)
I adjusted the pattern, took in my center back seam, and closed the lining around the zipper and waistline. Here you can see the closed waistline seam:
I lined the entire dress and I also added a neck facing, which I think looks nice inside a garment. It’s hard for me to only line the bodice of a dress. If I’m going to go to the trouble of doing that, I want to just line the whole thing. Plus, I don’t like seeing the pockets and seams. Concealing all of those details is, for me, cleaner and more professional looking.
You’ll notice I didn’t use an invisible zipper. That’s simply because I’ve had more invisible zippers break on me over the years than regular, polyester zippers so I use a polyester zipper in a centered application whenever I can, with only a few exceptions. Plus, it was fun to go with a marigold zipper and thread to highlight that color in the fabric.
Look at those gorgeous seams!
Side seam pockets (a must have, of course):
(Bear with me on this video quality. I’m working through the learning curve of editing video!) On me:
So, things you need to know about this pattern:
#1. It is gorgeous.
#2. There is quite a bit of ease in the sleeve. So much, in fact, that I wanted to cry setting them in.
#3. The dress runs big. I could have cut this two sizes smaller than my regular size.
#4. It’s easy to sew, and feels absolutely wonderful on. It’s comfortable, the pockets are great, and the seams could not be more flattering.
Finally, total cost. The fabric was $14.98/yd and I got four yards. I also got four yards of cotton lining at $2.50/yard, plus a zipper for about $3, and two spools of thread for about $3/each. About $80 total. Of course, when you count the hours spent in production, that number would be much higher.
Overall, I’m delighted with how well this project turned out. I wrote my project notes when I was still a bit frustrated with the sleeve and size issues, but I would make this dress again, for sure. It just checks too many boxes for me, and it’s so darn flattering.
Off to finish more goodies for my closet. Does the sewing ever really end?! Have a great week!
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