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
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
Time for my close ups; thank you to my daughter as ever for the pictures.
- Simplicity 1419 Lisette with a hint Simplicity 2444 neckline
- Size 10 Bodice grading to size 12 waist and hips (with generous ease allowed). Small bust adjustment on both sets of darts. Length extended by a couple of inches. No other changes.
- Fabric: Juliana Horner for Joanns, 'Rosette' on premium cotton. No longer easily available, sold in USA only.
- Clogs: Soft sole Red Täckt Lotta from Stockholm