I’m thinking, planning and putting together the materials needed for a jacket. The jacket is needed to complete my basic blacks. I think careful consideration is in order. Jackets can stay in my closet for years. If they are well made. If they are more classic. If they have more neutral rather than trendy details. So while I’m planning the jacket, I’m working on UFO’s including this new one:
Vogue V8025 is one of the cutest dresses. I made and posted this version back in July 2012. Unfortunately, the straps would never stay in place on my shoulder. I added bra carriers (a snap set at each end of a short strip of ribbon). I added elastic and a clingy plastic. All of which promised to solve the issue but didn’t. I even shortened the straps even after having carefully adjusted their length at the time of constructions. Nothing worked. Although I wore this dress rarely, every time I fussed with the straps trying to keep them in place and keep my bra straps covered. I reached my end point last week when what should have been a relaxing dinner ended up being a continual touching, shuffling, rearranging of those d@^^^ ^^ straps. I came home vowing to wash and donate. Let someone else have a pretty dress. But then, I really do like the fabric (a rayon woven to look like linen) and the colors and the print. So instead of trashing I decided it would do perfectly for Test #2 of my HAF approximation.
After washing the dress, I cut off the scraps and side seams. I pressed carefully and equally carefully arranged the fabric on the cutting board. I love rayon but in some versions, this linen weave being one, it’s as crawly as a crepe weave. I trimmed 1/8″ from the center front and 1/4″ from the side seams of my pattern. Then I arranged the pattern pieces on top of the fabric. Interesting, the back pattern would not fit on the back of the garment. No biggie.
I wanted a slightly different neckline. The high neckline of the HAF would be my choice for a white or even black shell worn for business. But my more casual life and the fact that it is summer determined a 2″lower neckline. Since I frequently use this neckline, I made a template for future use.
There were not enough scraps for facings. I had a linen-weave rayon in the Under 2’s but it was heavier. I prefer my facings to be the same weight or lighter. So instead I chose white batiste. I could use the back pattern piece to cut my back facing. Because of the altered front neckline, I chose to arrange the cut-out front on the batiste to cut the front facing.
Sewing was really standard. Tape front neckline and back shoulders. Serge the shoulders. Stitch the right shoulder 1/8″ deeper/lower. Apply the facing — no vent needed. This lower neckline will easily slip on and off. I did not nail the facings in place i.e. top stitch. I secured the facings with a combination of stitch-in-the-ditch along the shoulder seams and bar tacks along the center front and back seams. Yeah, the upcycled garment had center front and back seams. So this version had to have them as well.
I finished the armscyes with single-fold bias tape. Turned up my hem 1.25″ and blind stitched at the SM.
Notice: No fitting. Is that supreme confidence? You bet. My sloper has only caused fit problems once and I think that was a fabric issue. I was pretty sure this version wouldn’t be too small; the armscyes too deep or shallow; and ditto for the neckline. I have to credit Peggy Sagers here, too. I’ve been writing down and remembering “my measurements” which included how deep I like necklines. I really wish I had expanded from bust, waist, hip to these finished measurements long ago. In my defense, the idea was so new and Peggy the ‘lone voice in the wilderness’ that I couldn’t wrap my head around what she was saying. It took a while and some experience!
And the result?
Pretty good I think! I need to trim another 1/8″ from the center front. The shoulders sit too wide but because of the mini-cowl (even though much less than the previous test), I think it would be better to trim a little from CF.
I also need to trim another 1/4″ from the side seams at underarm. I have too much ease under the arms. I need to increase that amount to 3/8″ at the hem because I still have too much flare. I don’t think the side seam angle is right but I don’t want to over trim and make it tight across the hips. The original HAF was drafted to be close but comfortable fitting. I got the comfortable down pat. I’m working on close.