When I first started sewing, I sewed dresses almost exclusively.
Fitted dresses. Flared dresses. Long dresses. Short dresses.
You name it, I spent all night sewing it.
But overtime I kind of lost my love of sewing dresses. Possibly because I really don't wear a ton of dresses in everyday life. Probably because nowadays I tend to be drawn to simpler projects and fitting clothes kind of gives me a headache. And honestly, I'm not particularly good at fitting clothes to my body. I totally use cheater methods and anybody who knows anything about proper fitting techniques would no doubt shake their head at my lack of skills.
But despite all this, I did it anyway. Sew a dress, that is.
Don't be too impressed, though, because I basically sewed this dress (New Look 6557) once already -although that dress died an unfortunate death at the hands of my serger. Knowing that it fit fairly well the first time around, though, gave me the motivation to try my hand at sewing dresses once again. Plus, once I decided to make this dress, I found that I had the perfect amount of an ombre batik fabric in my stash. It's almost like it was meant to be.
Just like last time the dress came together fairly easily although I did find myself scratching my head at the point where I was supposed to sew on the back facings. In the end, I'm pretty sure that I didn't do it right but I've come to realize that pattern instructions are not the end all, be all and if I can figure out an alternative method that works just as well, then good for me. In making the dress I also opted to interface the front of the midriff and I added a facing for that piece as well to cover the interfacing. Also, I took off about three and a half inches in the length of the skirt after it was all sewn up because it hit at a weird point on my leg and I like the look of a knee-length skirt better. I also hand-sewed the hem because I wanted to avoid a visible hem, but it ended up being a fortuitous decision because it helped with easing in the flared skirt at the hem.
As for fitting modifications, I used my cheater methods once again and took about an inch off of the upper back through the placement of the invisible zipper. And because you fit the straps at the very end of making the dress I was able to make sure that the dress fit around the bust by adjusting the length of the straps. Part of me wonders if I should have fit the dress better around the bust, but another part of me knows that I tend to over-fit dresses which makes them fit perfectly when you're standing straight up, but makes them way too tight when you do anything else (like bend, or walk, or engage in anything that requires even a small range of motion).
In any case, it's done. I sewed a dress. It's just like the old days.
Only with a few more wrinkles and gray hairs.