The first iteration of the dress is finished, finally!
For the entire photoset see the flickr set here
The inspiration came from the Bottega Venetta dress from the Spring 07 collection.
In order to smock the dress I measured off two skirt lengths and a two bodice lengths from a piece of Italian cotton shirting that I picked up at the Sewing Expo in Novi MI in Sept '05 from The Wool House, a Toronto based fabric store. (Shannon has a some beautiful inside pics from her latest visit to the store here)
I then drew lines 1/2" apart square to the stripe in the fabric, and smocked for the back bodice the triangle that you see, and for the skirt, just a rectangle that extended 3" into the skirt to create a yoke.
in order to line up the smocked triangles on the skirt with those in the bodice it was necessary to hand baste the seam right on the stitching line.
I did the same for the front, bodice and skirt, just guessing on where the block of smocking should fall to be on the shoulder. I guessed wrong and after the dress was assembled and the shoulder seams sewn (with narrow pretty little french seams) I ended up having to remove the shoulder seam, take out the smocked block, completely move it over the width of the whole block, then restitch the shoulder seams, mostly by hand.
Once all the smocking was done, and I'd attached the bodice to the skirt pieces, I then overlaid the pattern for the shirtwaist dress Vogue 8353 , in which I'd pinned out the pleats, marked the dart that forms the collar shaping, and cut out and assembled the dress.
I did cut the width of the collar lapel on the dress pattern by 1/2.
The Vogue pattern itself is incredibly basic and easy, although I will say that the collar construction leaves a lot to be desired.
If I'd been able to finish on time, and there is another version of this dress on my worktable right now, this would have been my entry for the One Pattern Multiple Looks contest on PR
The other version I'm making also bears no resemblance to Vogue's version of this pattern. Maybe next week it'll be ready to show. ??
Big congratulations to Vonnevo who won the contest with her entry of a Butterick jacket made 3 ways.