Thursday, 25 November 2010

Badgley Mishka pattern

So! Here's my new sewing room, with new machine, and ....

... new view ...

And here's my new project, with my new fabric ....

And compared to this time last year, I am a brand new size.  I think it might be something to do with the fudge making frenzy I had back in April ... or perhaps it's just middle age spread (I'm plumping for the former - pardon the pun) .. but I am a whole 4 inches bigger this Christmas, than last.

This is a red silk with black pin dots.  It's quite heavy without the 'rustly' factor that dupion has, and with a nice drape.  Perfect for the pleats on this dress.  The lining is a soft peachskin type silk.  I have two parties to wear it to!

I was inspired to make this dress by the very talented Erica Bunker who made it earlier this year and it looked so fabulous on her, that I thought i'd give it a try and have been holding the idea in my mind ever since I read about it on her blog.  I also - as mentioned before - like the fact that it has a foundation because not many dress patterns have one.  I'm interested to see how this method works.

SO ... from the sizing chart given by Vogue, I figured I'd be a size 14.  I thought i'd try a new way of doing things, by folding and pining the pattern to see if the dimensions matched mine.  They didnt, and not being familiar with this type of cut - there appears to be no 'curves' but I am assuming they are hidden somewhere in the pattern.  I thought i'd better make a toile after all, because I need to know where it can be altered and where I can put curves (if necessary) where there are none.

I could see from doing this paper excersise however, that I liked the way the dress was moulded and the fall of the pleats and the skirt.  

OK... So I thought i'd washed my bundle of polycotton that I use for toiles - it's a devil material which shrinks by alot at the  mere sight of a hot iron, never mind a whiff of steam, so I got on with cutting the pattern this morning, sewed it all together and tried it on ... it was too big, by a LONG WAY, and to cut an even LONGER and more tedious story short, the facts of the matter are:

Pattern too big
Fabric too small - it shrunk by approx 0.5cm on each piece
Dress way to big on the bust but fits from the waist down.

I figured the only way to get round the problem without having to start all over again from scratch  was to resort to the measuring tape.  This is where knowing how to cut patterns comes into it's own.  Commercial patterns are an unknown quantity, but knowing where it is safe to take seams in and out, in general pattern construction, helps.   I took the side seams in by 2cm on each side (1cm each seam) down to the waist,  to make the width of each piece match my measurements.  PHEW! It fits like a glove.  

Now I've got to work out what size the foundation should be, though I am toying with the idea of drafting a new foundation, and inserting it according to the instructions given in the pattern.

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