Finished - the last dress of summer

Actually technically this was the first dress of Autumn. But we had such a hot early Autumn that I'm calling it summer. We were due a visit to my parents place in Bendigo, which by some meteorological quirk is always 200 degrees hotter than Melbourne, and I decided that I simply must make myself a nice cool airy frock for the visit.

So with 3 days to go (tell me I'm not the only one) I reached deep into the stash and found a piece of pin dot faded chambray that I'd scooped up from Darn Cheap Fabrics as a $5 remnant. This had long been earmarked for an Alder shirtdress (more than likely due to the resemblance of the sample dress on Grainline's website). My first Alder was a bit of a mistake and has long been refashioned into a Beignet skirt! The denim I chose was too heavy for a sleeveless dress, and I'm 99% certain I made it with 5/8th inch seam allowances instead of the drafted 1/2 inch, making it just a bit too snug. Anyway I wanted to try View B with the back ruffle in the hope that the waist seam would provide a better fit for my sway back.

This time I made a size 8 in the shoulders, grading to a 10 everywhere else. My hip measurements put me at a 12 but I knew there'd be plenty of room down there so didn't bother. To make life easier (clearly there's a recent theme of tricky technique avoidance) and save time I made a mandarin collar version, just by using the collar stand only, and leaving off the collar piece.

The fit is quite good except for the bust dart apex being a smidge too low. I may yet make some pockets to cover this up - I don't think I can shift the dart upwards as it's very close to the armscye. Perhaps I just can angle it by shifting the apex - is this as easy as it sounds???

From memory I think I cut the longest length hem as the drafted length for the 10 is SHORT! Those little right angles on the gathered skirt were a little tricky, but to be honest I don't think I cut them out with enough precision. Next time I'll be getting my ruler out to cut a perfect square corner on both pieces. Near enough was not clearly good enough. One is ok, the other a bit mediocre.

 It's a lovely airy frock - I do love the way the gathered back floats in the breeze. It's a bit of a departure from my more fitted dress styles, but it got the thumbs up from both my mum, my husband AND my GBF so the trinity of approval has spoken.

We visited the Marilyn Monroe exhibition whilst in Bendigo, and I can't recommend it enough. If you can get there, please do! And it'd be criminal of me if I didn't also recommend a visit to the Bendigo Woollen Mills factory store AND the delightful House of Cloth fabric store - both regular stops on my itinerary when I go to visit my parents.