Thursday, March 26, 2015

OOTE/Made by Me File: Spaced Out in McCall's 2401.

Outfit of the Evening:

Day: Saturday, March 21, 2015.

Where:  Auction for my kids' school.  Past years' outfits can be found here and here.

Ease of Wear: (4.5 of 5 stars--5 being the most easy to wear.)  Well, I made the darn dress out of a knit, so it fit me and it was super comfortable.  My only issue was that static cling thing again...the dang poly sticks to everything when there is even the vaguest hint of dry air (shaking fist furiously at the winter sticking around, boo).  So I had to wear a slip with this and it was a bit too long and even after taking up the straps on it with my sewing machine, the slip still managed to show its lacy hem.  Not exactly the look I was going for, if you kwim.  So I ended up tucking in part of the slip in my tights (about seven inches total at the slip's waist, leaving the skirt to hang loose below the tucked in bit), and crazily enough that worked.  Huh.  I didn't even feel it untuck once.  Of course I drank enough that by 9:45 it could have untucked and fully shown its pretty lace, and I definitely wouldn't have noticed, but based on everyone else there, I am sure I wasn't the only one too sloshed to care.

Outfit Details:  None of these are available, but if you are a seamstress you can find the fabric here at Spoonflower (called Sparkle Star Field).

Anecdote of the Day:  My hubby decided he wanted me to go on my own to the "Space Odyssey" themed auction.  I spent $125 on two things--two cosmopolitans (there was an open bar, but I am always a sucker for the "themed" drinks), and a night of babysitting with three gifts cards for a date with Mr. Dina.  So though by myself, I exhibited restraint in the auction venue.  (Some of those people throw the money DOWN, though.  Dang--what it would be like to say, "hey, I want a $3000 Capitals Jersey or a $1000 wine package.")  Anyhow.  What I needed him there for, though, was a reminder to eat.  Yeah, at my age you think I would know better.  No.  I ended up drinking four strong beverages and had a half a plate of food.  DUMB.  DUMB.

So one of the parents comes up to me at the auction and says, "I knew I knew you, but I just figured out how."  Turns out that we were in the same program at Mason together in college, he was just two years older than me.  Woah.  That is a crazy good face memory on his part.  Anyhow he now lives a few blocks from me and one of his kids is in Rex's class.  Tiny a$$ little world here, you all.

McCall's 2401.  This is a very basic sheath dress pattern that has loads of neckline and sleeve options, and based on the fact that there are three pages of reviews for it over at Pattern Review, this is a beloved pattern, too.  It has probably been around since 1996 if we are going on cover art alone.

I know that Burda 7137 has been made by me twice as a basic sheath dress, but that pattern has far fewer options for necklines and sleeves, and to be honest I don't want to keep making the same thing over and over, even though it is really tempting.

Anyhow, this pattern is not specifically for knits, but I saw some of the reviewers had made it up in knits similar to this performance knit, and I figured as long as I did what they did, I should be successful.

Definitely glad I left off the zipper, didn't need it at all, and glad that I decided to stay with my same size as I would have in the wovens (10 at shoulders and waist, graded out to a 12 and 14 at my high and low hip/hem).  Though the knit has a good amount of stretch, the print is on a white base, so if the fabric was too stretch too much, the white would come through and make the black background far less black, ruining the effect I was hoping to get.

The next time I make this in a knit, though, I will likely size down to the size below since I could tell that a lot of the drag lines/wrinkles came from the dress being a bit too large in certain parts.  It would have been fine in a structured woven fabric, but a drapey, stretchy knit, not as awesome looking.  Plus pressing this fabric was a bit of a difficulty, it kind of reminds me of ITY, in that it is awesome for packing, but really hard to iron.

So--lesson here--the form of the black galaxy print was more important to me than the function with the proper fit with no drag lines.  That doesn't mean I won't bitch about it below, though.  Ha.

This shot shows the full potential of this dress, but I am most definitely standing at my best posture, and the light from the direct sunlight isn't hitting the dress showing off all the wrinkles and drag lines.

I know I should be less hard on the dress, since (hello!) it was worn to a party in a dark space, and honestly, besides the few issues, looks really nice on me, but I am a notorious perfectionist about these things.  >:-(

There is one issue that I absolutely need to correct, and it has noting to do with excess ease from using a knit instead of a woven, and that is my square shoulder.  I often will do a square shoulder adjustment on my woven makes, but not on my knits since the knit fabric stretches to accommodate my straight across shoulder (most patterns make their shoulders sloping), but it didn't work this time, I can see the frown lines radiating from my armpit (especially the right shoulder, that's the one that is "up" more than the left).  I suspect those come from not making the square shoulder adjustment.  I always adjust for my hips, I should just get over it and always adjust for my shoulders.  :-)

Side view.  Haha, I needed to pull that belly in, eh?  I didn't hem the sleeves or the skirt.  The fabric is deliciously fray resistant/proof.  However, I will bring the sleeve hem up.  Unlike most patterns, this sleeve runs long...most of the reviewers with the long sleeves have the hem right at the wrist.  I have long arms and while technically I could get away with it hitting at my wrist, I know if I hem it up, that will take away some of the lower sleeve wrinkles/drag lines.

Back View. Hey! No drag lines or wrinkles at my butt!  It fits nice and proper there and at my upper neckline.  Woo.  (How's that for positivity?)

The waistline clearly shows that I need to make a swayback adjustment OR make a smaller pattern size at the waist.  The ease at the waist is around 7 inches, I believe, and with a 28" waist, which is three inches bigger than what is normally expected from a size 10 to wear, it should have a waist measurement of 32".  That extra few inches of ease is probably too much in a fabric like this and the sway back only makes it worse.  And it is also very possible that I need to reduce the length on the bodice since I have a short back measurement (it is 15.5 inches, and the size 10 calls for a 16" back measurement).

But the skirt fits at the hips!  WOO!

I finished the neckline with a foldover elastic, quartering it and stretching it to fit the neckline while I sewed it on with a zig-zag stitch.

The fabric was in honor of the "Space Odyssey" theme for the school auction I went to that night (I made it in one afternoon, yay, thankyouverymuchserger!), and if you like it you can find it here at Spoonflower

The dress was a hit.  Galaxy print dresses and leggings were everywhere a few years ago, but are out of favor right now (don't care!).  I had hoped to find more galaxy print fabric for sale, but really only Spoonflower had the best versions, so I just jumped right in and purchased two yards.  I loved the fabric and really do love the way the dress ended up looking (despite my fitting gripes). 

In addition to making the dress, I sewed up this pillow (it is a 28 x 28 form) for the auction.  It took a lot of work, especially appliqueing the stars on the fabric, but it was worth it.  I actually found quilting the stars very peaceful, but boy was I glad when it was done.  Don't ask me how much it went for, all I know is I couldn't have afforded it.  LOL.

You all have a great night!!!  Talk with you soon!