Monday, 5 August 2013

More on the Tiramisu Dress from Cake Patterns

Well, as you may remember, our Cake day event came and went, and I showed you a picture of my Tiramisu.  I'm very happy with it!

Me in my berry-coloured Tiramisu, posing with berry-coloured tiramisu!
I thought I'd write a bit more about  my thoughts on the pattern.

I find working with knits really freeing, cos there's no need to finish seam allowances, and the fit is so forgiving. I did make a toile though, which fit pretty poorly, so I'm glad I did!
I wanted negative ease, so I went for the smallest size.
The pattern has separate sizes for different cup sizes, which while not too confusing, I'm not convinced on. I think all the Wellington Sewing Bloggers who made it had problems with the boob area. It put me at a C cup, which I was highly dubious about, but went with it...
Yeah, it was super saggy. So I took a bunch of length out there. I also took length out of the waist which is pretty standard for me, as I have a short waist.
I took a skosh out of the side seam in the bodice too. The seams were also a bit wonky, so more fine-tuning. It didn't really bother me, lol, I just pinned it out, and transferred it to the pattern.

Man, I'm so blasé about knits, haha. I need to sew more of them I guess! 

One of the things Steph recommends is to compensate for the skirt. The weight of the skirt can pull down the top part, so the bodice and underbust seams should be sewn a little higher than you want them to sit.
I overcompensated for this! You can see my waist seam sits above the waist, but it doesn't bother me. I think the fabric I chose (which is delicious), is quite stable, as it is a cotton/spandex blend. The fact I shortened the skirt also reduced the sag factor I'm sure.

Being blasé about knits like I mentioned, I chopped 2" off the bottom of the skirt pattern before cutting. It's a little shorter than I'd planned, but is just decent enough for me. It helped me decide not to hem it though- it's a raw edge! Aah, so easy! Knits, I love you!!

I did still have to adjust the fit as I sewed the final version though. Even after having taken a good chunk out of the boobs, I still had a saggy boob pocket! So I had to take even more length out!
Then there was this:

This is a recurring issue for me. I usually have to add darts in woven fabrics, but for this, the fix was easy. I simply pinned out the gape and measured that. Then I unpicked the binding across the back of the neck, and cut that excess out (minus small seam allowances). With a newly created CB seam for the binding, I sewed it back on while stretching it to fit. Hope this makes sense!

It looks like this now- sorry for the slightly bad pic but you get the picture. It hugs the back of my neck lovingly.

The pattern called for 2.2m of fabric, but my fabric was extra wide so I bought 2m.  I hoped that would be enough.
I ended up cutting it out in a single layer, which took me FOREVER but it was totally worth it because I had a bunch left over- enough to make a Renfrew!  Yay!  It's like a sweet little freebie. Taking the 2" off the skirt probably helped conserve fabric as well.

I have decided single layer cutting is how I do knits. I find it much less stress, and easier to handle. I hate how knits squirm and wrinkle when you've got two layers on top of each other, so the precision of one layer is preferable for me. Plus, you can't argue with a free Renfrew right?? I just have to remember to flip the piece that would have been on the bottom layer... I've made that mistake way too many times.

Oh by the way, this dress has POCKETS:

I'm in pocket-y heaven!
However, I started out in pocket-y hell. So I tried out this new thing Steph recommends called "fusible stay tape", which is basically a pre-cut strip of fusible interfacing that keeps things from stretching out. It's applied at the pockets and shoulder seams.

Public service announcement!! Please folks, double and triple check that you are looking at the wrong side of the fabric when fusing! I fused mine to the RIGHT side of one of my skirt pieces by mistake and naturally, proceeded to freak out.

I've managed to rip half of it off here, but all those adhesive dots remain!  Aargh!
I desperately tried to remove it for some time, but came to the realisation I'd do better to re-cut the skirt piece. I was very upset I'd maybe lose my free Renfrew, but a hasty cutting layout reassured me I had JUST enough. Just!! Phew!!

Other thoughts on stay tape: Use a press cloth when fusing it (after checking and rechecking it's in the right spot of course, haha). I also clipped the corners when applying it to the neckline. I haven't seen this mentioned but it's the only way I figured I could get it lying flat.

Wow, turns out I had a lot to say about this pattern!  I'm glad I made a whole new post about it. Heh! I do want to make another of this dress. It's so comfortable. And if I can do it with less tweaking (and mistakes), it'll be even more satisfying!
Maybe a striped one is worth trying?

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