Sunday 15 March 2020

Wagtail Dress

It's been a while since I last blogged, but it's not because I haven't sewn. I made this dress back in August and have worn it a dozen or more times since. It was even photographed in December, just waiting for me to get around to writing about it on here.

The fabric is a Jocelyn Proust design from Spotlight, with a Willy Wagtail print. Jocelyn Proust makes great fabrics, mostly with Australian flora and fauna prints. The pattern is Vogue 9199. It's a Very Easy Vogue pattern, and I don't think I've made one before. I was looking for a simple knit dress pattern and this was what I could find. I almost dismissed it because the illustration on the front isn't great, but I was wanting a pattern to make a dress to take on holiday so had to go with what was available.

Because the print is directional it turned out I didn't have enough fabric to make the dress exactly as it is in the packet - the pieces were slightly too wide and the fabric slightly too narrow, and the print wouldn't work with some upside down birds. So I decided to cut the bodice half using the pattern and then use the leftover fabric to do a simple rectangle skirt. It wasn't enough to be able to do even gathers around the entire waistline, so I just did gathers at the four princess seams - two at the front and two at the back.

The fabric is lovely to sew with. It's a relatively thick jersey with moderate stretch that retains its shape well but isn't too hot to wear. It goes through the machine smoothly, and has kept its colour and stretch through multiple washes (the benefit of not writing a post until six months after finishing a make is I can review how it holds up in real life). 

 The pattern is a slightly looser fit than I had originally planned, but I do still like it. I think it works better with the rectangle skirt than it would with the full length princess seams as it gives it that slight bit more shape. But I really like the neckline and the sleeve shape and length. A good cap sleeve that is fitted but still allows movement is often hard to find in sewing patterns - too many are restrictively tight or far too long but these are just right.

Given I've worn this dress many times I'm obviously happy with the outcome. It's a comfortable, easy to wear dress, and the print is fantastic. I'm not sure if I'll make the pattern itself again, but might use it as the basis for making t-shirts, removing the princess seams. At the very least I will use the sleeve pieces in the future.

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