Thursday, 29 August 2013

Colette Pastille - difficult birth but (almost) done

Finally, I am (almost) done with the Pastille Dress from the Colette Sewing Handbook. In total it took me 2 weeks starting with pattern tracing, muslin 1 and 2, and the final version. At times I actually was not sure if I would finish this dress and just kept going for the sake of it.

May I introduce my Pastille Dress:

Summer time...

Pattern: Colette Pastille. The original pattern comes without the waistband. There are 3 pleats on the hem and the dress has little cap sleeves. Closure is a centered back zipper.

Constructions: I almost gave up at several points, because I got stuck and didn't know what to do. My main issue, which was completely self-made, was that the side seams of bodice/waistband and skirt don't match.

Seams of waist and skirt don't match.
Fortunately it is not that obvious (when you not sew yourself). I couldn't figure out what the problem is. But luckily, Charlie from thisblogisnotforyou pointed out after my last post, that I had reduced the center seam (muslin No2) of the bodice. Apparently, I must have applied these changes to the waistband but not to the skirt. That explains perfectly well why my bodice seams are closer to the center. (I still think, I pattern walked on the tissue to make sure the patterns have the same length.)

My waistband came out weirdly shaped - ah, it's a design feature :)

Also the shape of the waistband is a bit odd. So, all the way, I was asking myself: Why did you have to make a waistband? Wouldn't a simple belt be enough? And because of the waistband I had short fat darts, which were very difficult to press. I tried to re-sew several times to make the point a bit sharper, but then they were too long.

Neckline with a satin ribbon.

The neckline was also really scary, as it got its right shape only after I had stitched the facing on. Before there were millions of drag lines (there are still a few).





Mr Zipper and I were also no friends. The pattern called for a centred zipper and as it was 3 years ago, that I had sewn one, I gave it another go. I had my sewing book next to me, but somehow the descriptions were not very detailed and I ended up with an ugly very visible zipper. I know it is not an invisible zipper, but still. After having a chat with Charlie, we decided that I could try to push some fabric over the zipper with the iron. I then tacked the fabric by hand, so that the zipper was hidden underneath. Then I stitched around the zipper to secure the fabric. Not perfect, but at least it is not screaming anymore at you when looking at my back. Too late (now) I realised, I actually have a free Craftsy Class for mastering zipper techniques, ah.

Being done with the zipper, I discovered that there were massive fabric folds on the skirt back radiating from the waist to my bum. These were there because of my sway back! I had made a sway back adjustment to the bodice but not to the skirt :( I managed to make them less visible by making the darts on the skirt a bit bigger. Now, I had the problem I couldn't step into my dress anymore, but luckily I was reminded that I can pull the dress over my head as well :) Should have been obvious, shouldn't it?
Details...
Also very depressing was, that my boyfriend told me that my waist and main fabric do not fit together and that polka dots don't suit that style of dress, bummer. He made that comment after I failed to sew in the zipper. So very motivating when you are down already, grrrr.
 
Will I make it again? I don't think so. At least not with the waistband. At the moment I am just fed up with this dress.

Have I worn it yet? No, because I still have to line the skirt - that's why the heading says almost :) I have underlined the bodice and wanted to make a lining for the skirt. I really have to, because the skirt was clinging to me like crazy when we went out to take the pics. So, I hope I get my spirits up soon to do it.





Do I like it? I think I start to. I love the fabrics and the little pink bow. The style and colours are so me. And if I wear it with a cardigan, you will not see the zipper :)

14 comments:

  1. With respect to your boyfriend, I do think he is totally wrong! I love the dress in polka dots and your contrast and ribbon too. Give yourself a little time, once you are over the frustrations you had with the dress, and you will see what we see. .......... One very cute dress!

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    1. Thank you, Wendy. Up to now the dress is hanging in my wardrobe and hopefully I can convince myself soon to sew the skirt lining.

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  2. I agree with Wendy,I love the fabric choice. This dress turned out great.

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  3. I'm a third for the two fabrics looking great together. I tried to leave a comment on your last post yesterday on my tablet computer thingy, but it wouldn't play, so we'll call this a double comment!

    I think your dress looks great, the fit is fab, and the neckline is lovely. If it's any consolation, I am having a bit of a nightmare with this pattern at the minute too. I did a sway back adjustment on the bodice on my toile, (this seems to be a general issue with this pattern), cut my fabric, sewed up the bodice, and there's still a big bulge at the back. Sigh. I'm hoping extending the back darts will fix it. I refuse to entertain the idea of a sway back adjustment for the skirt because I hadn't thought of that!

    The bodice is currently sitting beside my machine, having a think about what it's done. You're inspiring me to keep going with it because I do love my fabric. I have that Craftsy zipper course too, and am thinking of trying the lapped zipper on my dress. I hope mine turns out as nice as yours.

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    1. Thanks, Lynne :) and yeah I know that problem with the tablets. It is always so annoying you have just finished your comment and when you want to post it is gone. I appreciate very much, that you tried again!
      Yes, I also read that a lot of people had to do a sway back adjustment although they never needed one before. I hope that you can get rid of the fabric bulge - for me it worked by making the darts deeper at the skirt.
      I am glad I motivate you to keep going! It would be such a shame to waste the fabric especially if it is such a beautiful one. Good luck with your zipper as well.

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  4. Your fabric choices are lovely! Anyone who has made a garment understands how frustrating sewing can be, especially when it comes to fit. And techniques take time to master, so even if you aren't completely happy with the end result, this dress is a great testament to your persistence. You look adorable in your new dress so wear it with pride. I was thinking of making this dress at some point, and will definitely refer back to your post when I do. I also thought it would be much cuter with a contrasting waistband, so I found your experience very honest and helpful!

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    1. Thank you. I just have the feeling that every garment you try to sew/fit, is a new challenge. But I am sure with more experience and patience, it will get easier :) If you are going to sew the dress, definitively make a muslin to get the fit right. And even than as you can see it can still go wrong. Happy sewing!

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  5. The fabrics go well together - I love the flowers with the polkadots. And I'm a big fan of the shape of the neckline.

    Sewing this dress really seems to have been quite a struggle, but look at you! It looks amazing. No one will notice the drag lines as soon as you are moving and the zipper looks totally fine now! x

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    1. Thanks a lot for your help with the zipper and for figuring out what went wrong with my side seams :) If there ever should be a 2nd one, I know at least what to change!

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  6. I love the polka dots as well and the pop of flowers, the neckline looks fine to me and I think that the fit is good as well.

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    1. Thank you. I am getting more convinced to wear the dress in public ;)

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  7. I think it looks really pretty. The first thing I thought when I saw the the photo was, "wow, the waistband looks really cool with the polka dots!" So tell your boyfriend he is WRONG! What do boys know about fashion anyway?! Also the pleated hemline is amazing. It looks brilliant on you so I reckon you should wear it. A. Lot.

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    1. Hehe, yeah you are right. Boys don't have a sense of fashion! I will give my best to sew the lining in soon and then I will wear it :)

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