Oh look, another Deer & Doe pattern!
This time it's the Deer & Doe Bruyere Shirt, which I lengthened by 4" to make it a dress. I almost went midi-skirt length, but I chickened out. I'm not sure that's a style I would wear much, and I think it would look a little costumey with this Victorian-wallpaper-print fabric. This dark, moody print is called Crochet Meadow A by Liberty of London.
If you asked me to pick a favorite fabric, it would almost certainly be this silk/viscose blend, which I used for the contrast fabric. The color shifts between a deep blue and green, and the twill weave gives the material a beautifully slinky drape. The hand is soft and it feels amazing against the skin. I made the Papercut Patterns Swing Dress with it, and in the future I plan to make a slip dress.
It is, however, so shifty that it's a pain to cut out and keep the pieces the right shape. So for the contrast pieces of this dress I cut out the interfacing first, ironed that to the fabric, and then cut the fabric out. The pocket is not interfaced and it took a lot of time and patience to shape it right (this dress has no pockets, I took this from something else). Originally I had pockets on both sides of the bodice, but I didn't like that. I think this is a little too high, I just have to work up the motivation to move it.
I cannot for the life of me make a nice bound sleeve placket. So I had to resort to a tower placket for the sleeves. I'm not sure they fit with the style of the dress, but they do help tone down the very feminine look.
Instead of doing a 1/2" swayback adjustment at the waist, which I can't quite wrap my head around, I raised the back shoulder seams 1/2". That's a bastardized version of the method that Pattern Scissors Cloth describes here, if you scroll down to the bottom of the blog post, and that's what I'll try next time. But it works well for me!
An interesting difference between men's and women's shirts is that sleeve heads for men start at the edge of the shoulder, but women's shirts tend to give the illusion of narrower shoulder, so they start in a little more. And that's why men's sleeves can be sewn in flat but women's often have to be eased in, because our sleeves need more room for the shoulder joint. All of this to say that I measured the sleeve length from the wrong point of my shoulder, so I nearly made my sleeves way too short, but thankfully I noticed this and just used tiny seam allowances on the cuffs.
I finished this before Christmas thinking it would be such a beautiful holiday dress, not thinking how cold it gets this time of year. So this might have to wait a few more months! It'll be a nice spring/fall dress.