Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Twirl, Baby, Twirl - The Vogue 1027 DKNY Dress Review

Everyone once in a while you come across a pattern that is an absolute dream to put together. The pattern pieces match, the rating is accurate and the outcome is just as you pictured. As you sew you swear the stars must be aligned.

Vogue 1027 is one of those patterns. As I sewed I only had one question "why in the world did I wait so long?"

Just a few alterations were needed before the sewing began - an FBA and forward shoulder adjustment. With the knit I may not have needed the FBA but choose to do one to ensure there was enough room in the bodice to prevent the empire waist from being too high in the front.

Construction itself is simple with good instructions provided by the pattern company. For example, shoulder seams are stayed, which is something the pattern companies don't always remember to add to the instructions for knit garments.

In fact, construction on this dress was so straight forward that I only glanced at the instructions rather than follow along step-by-step.

The neck edge is simply serged, turned to the wrong side and stitched in place. I usually add clear elastic in these front crossover necklines to ensure no gapping, but it wasn't needed this time.

I choose to use the armhole facings. After topstitching I trimmed the excess away on the inside of the garment. By the way, and you might be able to see this in the photo, I used a narrow zig-zag stitch when sewing and topstitching the seams and edges on this dress.

The tie end and back band was the only place I should have followed the instructions provided. I folded the tie end in half, right sides together, and sewed together leaving one short edge open for turning.

Actually I didn't just sew it, I serged it. Which meant when I realized I had goofed, I could either unpick the serged seam or recut the tie. I choose the path of least resistance knowing I had enough fabric left to recut the tie. Whew!

This time when I folded the tie end in half, right sides together, I only sewed to the dot large circle. Now when I added the back band I was able to sew the tie to the bodice leaving a small portion unsewn in the center front.

That portion of the tie is pulled together tightly when the dress is worn. Hmmm, how does that go again?

The pockets were a must have and, in this knit, don't add any bulk. I'd leave them out if I was sewing this in a really soft drapey knit. Now I have the perfect spot to clip my ID badge when I wear the dress to the office.

I didn't notice until I was done that this dress actually has 1/4" wide elastic sewn into the seam that connects the bodice and skirt. Much like this top I sewed recently.

While the elastic might seem excessive, knowing that the tie will pull the dress in slightly, I really liked the addition on that black top. However, I serged this seam and didn't relish the thought of ripping the seam out just to add a casing for elastic and left it as is.

While the tie does indeed pull the dress in slightly, after wearing the dress for a day I realize that part of the dress could be tighter. So next time I'll either plan on cutting it a bit smaller or remember to add the casing and elastic.

The final step was to let the dress hang for a day (or two or three or a seven...) before hemming the bias skirt. My skirt did need some slight adjusting before sewing the final hem, but as it was only longer in the back it may have been due to the need for a back length adjustment.

I'm so pleased with this dress. It's incredibly comfortable and versatile enough to wear running errands or to the office on hot, steamy summer days.

Best of all? It passed the twirl test.

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