Tuesday, September 21, 2010

It's Done! Vogue 1183 - The Red Kay Unger Dress


The red Kay Unger dress - Vogue 1183 - is finally done. Actually it's been done for a few weeks now, I just haven't felt like putting a sleeveless dress on so I could take photographs. It's been cold here!

Now I don't want to hear any of "oh, it's cold here too...it got down to 70"...or something like that. Just kidding. I only say that because I'm jealous. It's been cold enough that I seriously debated about whether or not to turn the heat on in the house. (I didn't by the way. Time enough for that soon enough. I just piled on more sweaters.)

However, as I was switching my closet over from warm to cold weather attire, I thought I'd at least blog about the dress before it gets packed away. This baby likely won't see the light of day for another six month.

So what can I say about the dress? Love the red color and the fabric - an RPL ponte knit from Fabric Mart Fabrics - is super comfy. Not quite as wonderful as I had envisioned but that has more to do with the style of the dress on me versus the actual dress.

I did a small FBA, which is one of my usual alterations. I also added 3/8" length to the bodice. Again, nothing out of the ordinary for me.

It appears from the pattern envelope that the back waist inset is lower than the front - at least judging by where the belt hits the model's waistline. I found that to be true on my dress also. But the back was too low compared to the front so I ended up removing the excess length at the side seam and back bodice.


Even with the FBA the front gaps. I'll need to tack it closed - as mentioned by many others who have already sewn this one.

The pattern is rated easy, but don't confuse easy with quick. Something I like to do. This is indeed easy to sew, but it was time consuming. As I mentioned in a previous post, if you're unsure of how this might fit you do a muslin. The order of construction for this dress is such that you sew pieces together, edgestitch and topstitch, then continue with the construction.

For example, the princess seams on the front and back bodice are sewn, edgestitched and topstitched before the shoulder seams are sewn. The lining is then added which finishes the neck and armhole edges with the neckline then edgestitched and topstitched. Now the bodice side seams are sewn together. All of this happens before sewing the midriff and skirt pieces to the bodice. If you usually make alterations as you sew it's going to be more difficult with this dress.

That being said, because I didn't follow my advise and sew a muslin, I basted the entire dress together and checked the fit before doing any final sewing. I cut a 12 in the shoulder/bust and tapered to a 14 at the waist/hip, but ended up taking the dress in at the waist and hip.

The edgestitching and topstitching was the most time consuming part of this dress, but it sure does make it look polished. Want to know my tip for even topstitching? I use a 1/4" quilting foot. Produces nice even rows every time.


The dress is fully lined and I used a white tricot knit that I had on hand. It doesn't make for the most beautiful looking dress on the inside but it serves its purpose. I followed the instructions Vogue gave for adding the lining. It seemed odd as I sewed it, but the end result was quite nice.

Even though I completed it too late in the season to enjoy wearing it, it was a fun project to work on. And I'll have something new to wear when the weather warms up again...in about six months.

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17 comments:

  1. Fabulous dress - I love that stunning shade of red and it looks beautifully constructed.

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  2. Very pretty dress on you.

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  3. That dress looks terrific on you. Lady in Red! You wear it well. Maybe a matching or coordinating jacket for fall? Oh, and it has been quite cool in MI, too, especially in the evenings.

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  4. Beautiful. Don't see why you can't wear it with a cardi or jacket or even with a thin knit underneath.

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  5. Congratulations! It looks lovely on you! I'm really loving every version of this Kay Unger dress that I've seen - yours is no exception!

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  6. Your dress is beautiful! Sorry you can't wear it until Spring. Could you layer a turtleneck underneath and wear it with tights and boots?

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  7. wow. it's really impressive =0] Great job!

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  8. The dress is beautiful and suits you perfectly!

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  9. I adore this dress! This pattern was made for you. I didn't know I was in need of a new foot until now, thanks for the great tip!!

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  10. Yeah, the dress queen does it again. I love it. How is your son, I've been thinking about him?

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  11. i love this dress, especially in red. You could wear it with a top underneath.

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  12. What a beautiful, flattering dress.

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  13. Looks great. It certainly makes a statement.

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  14. Love the dress, especially with the black & white dress

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  15. I think it looks fabulous on you! Enjoy it. I might be tempted to wear it just once - with a cardigan before packing it away. g

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  16. Hey lovely lady, thanks for all the great FBA pic. I will do it the same as you. Ans i can't wait for the FBA for the V1329, since i'am at a complete loss, and your work is so marvelous.

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  17. Hey lovely lady, thanks for all the great FBA pic. I will do it the same as you. Ans i can't wait for the FBA for the V1329, since i'am at a complete loss, and your work is so marvelous.

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