Me Made : Frocktails dress Vogue #1289

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I have to admit, I had trouble deciding what to make for our Frocktails event.  There was simply too much choice!

I initially had my eye on a sequinned, figure hugging number but then thought I would challenge myself with sewing from my stash. 

Combing through the patterns, I shortlisted a couple but after a discussion over a cocktail with Maaike from Maaidesign, we settled upon the Vogue V1289 by Pamela Rolland pattern. 

Now I've used this pattern before...I used it to base my wedding dress off.  So I was familiar with it and confident I could sew it up in time.  Because of course, time was ticking and I was being indecisive. 

However, the indecisive theme kept continuing as I purchased some lovely inky coloured lurex from The Fabric Store and then found this taffeta/silk in my stash!  Again, I consulted friends and we decided on the teal stash buster!  


Now we came to the cutting which let's just say didn't go well!  All the pieces are flat lay and single piece only.  Silly old me got a bit distracted by the block fusing of the bodice pieces and stupidly layed the bodice pieces wrong side up and the skirt piece right side up (yes, the skirt is one piece)....leaving with the pleats not matching at the waistband.  You can see here that the pleats are meant to meet....mine are opposite.  Oh well, I'm hoping none of the those eagle eyed Frocktails ladies noticed!  But I bet some did!

Never mind, onwards and upwards, I didn't have any more fabric to cut new bodice pieces so I just did the best I could.  I think I pull it off ok! Well, I'm hoping so anyway!

The pattern came together really nicely.  I enjoyed how the pleats folded up nicely and made for a flush waistband.  I really enjoyed sewing the strappy side of the bodice.  And I felt that fitted me well. 

As for adjustments, I did toile this so I had a good idea of what I needed to change.  I cut a size 12 from the pattern, reduced the side seams under the arms (as I always need to do with Big4 patterns), I shortened the bodice to make my waist more cinched and I lengthened the hem by 10cm (as I always need to do!).

I think I have made this dress enough times now, but I would reduce the gathers at the shoulders dramatically as that bodice pieces was far too puffy and bulky.  I would also make sure the fabric is the right way up for all pieces!  D'oh! 

I would however, consider using the skirt and the strap side of the bodice again, and make the bodice symmetrical.  I think that would work well.  And possibly use more of a drapey fabric. 

I also made my sister, Liz, a dress.  It's the Salme Olsen dress.  I have made a few of these as sun dresses and they are super quick and satisfying to make up.  This pattern and fabric was in my stash as well! Challenge accepted...twice!

All the details....

Pattern: Vogue #1289 by Pamela Rolland

Size: 12

Adjustments: Added 10cm to length, shortened bodice by 3cm, shortened the strap by about 10cm!, reduced the neckline on the gathered bodice, reduced the side seam at underarm.

Fabric: A silk taffeta in teal.  Was in the stash, not sure where I got it from.

What I would change for next time:  Reduce the gathers at the shoulder seam dramatically, take in the waist a little bit more.

How easy was it to make:  An intermediate level sewer would be about to make this up fairly simply. The adjustments were tricky given the pleats and gathers.

You can also check out all about the Frocktails event here.  If you would like to join us next time, please sign up to the newsletter and stay tuned for more info!

Caz xx