June 1st is my 35th wedding anniversary (!!!). I've mostly been making masks and knit tops recently, since those are what my family and I can use the most. But in the spirit of celebration, and of hope that some day life may return to "normal", I decided to make myself a celebration dress. I had this pattern in my stash, and thought it would work well.
The fabric I used is a textured ITY in a vines pattern. I had a number of these fabrics earlier this year, but there is only This One Left. It has a textured laminate on the face that gives it a wonderful heft and drape. I got this one because there was a small stain in the middle of the fabric that I discovered after I cut it for a customer. I cut another piece for her, and decided that I liked it enough to keep it for myself (the perks of owning the store).
According to Butterick, this dress "is close fitting with side gathers, neck and armhole bands and slightly flared hem in three lengths. A: Above mid knee length. B: Below mid knee length. C: Ankle length." I made view B, the below-knee length.
I like the ruched side seam. It is flattering and covers a multitude of sins. Views B&C have a godet inserted into the side, along with a flounced lower skirt. It gives the whole dress a salsa-swish effect which I love.
Overall, this dress sews together easily. I don't really like the instructions for inserting the godet. They have you sew the front and back upper pieces to the lower pieces, sew them together at the side, ending at the dot where the godet attaches, then sew the godet into the bottom. This makes it harder to get a nice sharp point at the godet.
It's not terrible, and no one but I will notice it. And I'm too lazy to go back and rip the whole thing out, but I might yet. We'll see.
Instead, I recommend that you sew the godet to the back before sewing the side seams. Then sew the front to the back/godet in one fell swoop. I didn't think of this until after I had made mine. Next time.
As I say, this goes together quite easily. I used 1/4" elastic for the ruching (Shhh! Don't tell anyone I have some. I think I'd recommend using clear elastic instead, if you have some. It's a little less bulky. I ran up some of the seams on my little Brother machine, but mostly I serged them.
I used my Brother to stitch down the neckline and armhole bands.
I thought about using my cover stitch machine for those, and for the hem, but I did a couple of test runs and it just felt rather heavy to me. Instead, for the hem, I used a narrow overlock stitch. This keeps the feeling light, and gives a nice finish.
Overall, this is an easy dress to make. It's pretty, it's feminine, and if the quarantine ever lifts, it will make a nice date dress. In the meantime, I'll probably wear it to the Zoom Friday cocktail chat that my husband and I do with a group of friends. I'll get a picture on me eventually, but here are shots on Shelley.