Here’s Simplicity 3506 again.. this time made up as a dress using some gifted rayon I got from my grandmama (merci, cherie!).
I’ll be honest here, I’m not a huge fan of rayon, and I pretty much abhor all but the simplest of prints. That said, who am I to look a gift fabric in the mouth? I need all the practice I can get, especially with slinky/troublesome fabrics.
This time around, I figured out how to do the neck of the dress properly, including the epaulettes…but then the neckline felt HUGE on me and it really wants to slip off… I guess I have petite shoulders for my size bust, so it’s going to be an adventure figuring out how to reconcile those two things!
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The Pattern: Simplicity 3506 (dress pattern used), cut for size 24. Minor pattern alterations — just shortened the dress a few inches so it hit mid-knee.
The Fabric: Donated rayon from grandma… this stuff is ravel-y! I had no idea how much so until I cut some, then accidentally brushed an edge too much and came up with a handful of thread! The fabric is really too thin for me to wear unlined… luckily, I have a wicked cool full slip that makes it look great!
The Notions: Fusible interfacing (needed it on this one) 20″ zipper (still overkill… didn’t even put it in this time)
The Costs: $2 total. Re-using a pattern I’ve already used, the fabric was a gift, so this is just for the thread and the fusible interfacing. This is more like it.. a cheap dress, finally! Whew!
The Cutting: I used my rotary cutter and mat for the again on this project — I shudder to think what would have happened if I’d used scissors (even my newly sharpened shears)! Marking was still a pain on this fabric. If any of you seamstresses out there have tips, I’d love to hear them!
The Piecing: Again, super simple pattern!
The Fitting: Still no fitting prior to sewing… silly me! Was missing the extra ease through the tummy area that I lost from the uber binding of the seams I did. Ah well, slip fixed it.
The Sewing: Figured out how to put the bodice together properly this time! I really liked the way the resulting dress fit my figure… but the neck seems too huge. I wonder how much of that is distortion from the rayon stretching, and how much is that I’ve got a small frame and big bust. Need to figure this out! This time, I zigzagged the crap out of the folded edges before I even put the pieces together. This worked okay, except on one side seam where I had to go over it again because some of the zig-zag stitches were showing. Oops!
The Reception: I haven’t worn this out of the house yet, but I might… especially in the fall when I can wear it with a cardigan to subdue the pattern a bit! I’m picturing it with a black cardi, a wide belt, and some shiny black beads.
The Aftermath: This dress is surprisingly comfortable. Hooray!
The Future: I will absolutely make this pattern again — I still have some kinks to work out and want to know how much of it was fabric choice, and how much could be improved by a true fitting before I stitch everything together.