Thursday, 14 August 2014

Simplicity 1419 Lisette Dress

I often incentise my sewing with mini targets and chances to wear the item in question.  This dress was made for Fat Quarterly Retreat 2014.  I wanted to find a pattern with a good bodice that I could translate on to a range of dress skirts and I think I have found it.  Simplicity 1419, Lisette dress and jacket.  I've made the jacket too and that is being treated to a blog post of its very own.  The dress was an easy make, once I got over the always essential and tedious hurdle of making a test bodice and altering the darts.

I tweaked the neckline to complement the 1950s feel of the print with a little help from Simplicity 2444  and brought the neckline in at the shoulders to keep bra straps under wraps.  The bodice is lined in cotton lawn so I didn't have to add any facings.

Apart from that, this is an easy pattern to sew and fit.  The skirt width is altered at the side seams- the front pleats are the same for each size.  Nice and easy!

I like to try out any tips and tricks when I can, so this time for the zip, I tried a little glue basting.  In quilting/patchwork  Cristy and her mom, Sharon have popularised this method for different kinds of piecing.  It uses Elmer's school glue and a bottle with a fine tip.  I found Elmer's School Glue on Amazon.  I bought these tiny glue bottles on ebay and the tip hasn't clogged, it has worked brilliantly!  You do need to remember to heat set as you glue using a dry iron. It certainly made sewing a zip (never my favourite job) a lot easier.

Quick summary of the method: Glue Basting a Centred Zip
  1. The centre back seam is sewn with a large temporary stitch to the point where the zipper end will be, then change to a smaller standard stitch, secure with a back stitch and sew the remainder of the seam.   Press the seam open.
  2. On the WS, the zip is placed with teeth against the opened seam, using a thin line of glue on either side to hold the zipper tape in place and keeping the glue away from the zipper teeth.  Press zip gently down with a dry iron.
  3. Turn to RS, sew from the top of the zipper to the bottom, stitching ¼" away from the centre seam stopping at the centre seam and securing.  Repeat on the other side.
  4. Unpick the large temporary stitches to reveal the zipper teeth underneath.
As I was lining the bodice, I didn't need any seam edge finishing but usually this would happen in step one.  I have been trying glue basting with some other dressmaking steps, just here and there.  It washes out and is a very temporary adhesive and I've had no problems so far.

 Other fancy finishing included using some tape to cover the waist seam on the inside,  it looks nicer and makes it more comfortable to wear.

Time for my close ups; thank you to my daughter as ever for the pictures.

Essential Details
sib blog


  1. It's a lovely dress Kerry! I really like that fabric, it suits you perfectly :) I always find zippers a bit tedious to sew. It's rare for me to get them just right without having to unpick - several times if I'm unlucky. I'll definitely give glue basting a go next time. Do you put the zipper pull up or down when you install it on a closed seam like this? I tend to get a little wobble in my stitching line where the zipper pull is no matter what I do!

    1. I know what you mean about the zip pull. I leave it upwards and I tend to start my sewing lower down, then come back to that bit later when I undo the seam, slide the pull down and finish the seam off. I try and run the stitching lines together so it looks like a continuous seam on each side. It is hard to get it looking perfect.

  2. Really lovely, Kerry! You always do such a lovely finish. xxx

  3. Great dress! Like how you covered the waist seam :)

  4. This looks great! I considered that Lisette pattern recently but I am too good at buying patterns (and fabric!) and then never sewing them so I was strict with myself. I use magic tape to hold down the edges of zips before sewing them but can see this glue basting method would be good too.
    Hen x

  5. really pretty and thanks for the glue tip!

  6. Really lovely dress, it fits you perfectly and the fabric is really nice.

  7. I've used wondertape before because it's right by the sewing machine. The glue - I have to remember to give it time to dry - I don't use that method as often. I've also hand basted.
    As for the zipper pull 'wobble stitching', I've noticed, with my new machine, I can get my needle over to the far left (or far right) and use my regular foot - more secure on the fabric than my rinkydink zipper foot - less 'wobble' by the pull area.

  8. ...and.....Beautiful color with your gorgeous hair.

  9. so gorgeous! I love the bodice :-D

  10. Your dress looks fantastic on you! Perfect pairing of fabric to pattern, and your adjustments to the neckline and finishing touches give the dress a wonderful vintage chic flair. I personally am much more intimidated by fitting a bodice than I am by zippers. Last time I tried to do a full bust adjustment to a dress pattern, I ended up with a dress that fit my 6'8" husband better than if fit me, and the finished project went straight to Goodwill donation. :-(

  11. It's a perfect combination of fabric, pattern and fit and looks wonderful on you!

  12. Very pretty, green is a great colour on you :o)

  13. Looks good! Interesting bodice construction.

  14. Love the dress! wonderful fabric also and it looks fabulous on you - I think I'll give it a go.... thanks for sharing!

  15. Gorgeous fabric choice and it fits you beautifully. Lovely.

  16. Great work; that dress really suits you; and thanks for the links.

  17. You always pick the best fabrics for your clothing! Love this dress and you look so lovely!


Thank you for taking the time out to leave your thoughts, I do very much appreciate you stopping by! Blogger is not sending comments through by email at the moment so I'll reply in the comments.