Sunday, March 08, 2009

Butterick 5146

I love the stylings of knit dresses. I really love wrap dresses that are based upon the Diane Von Furstenberg original wrap dress. BUT I hate the way the backside of knit and wrap dresses look on some plus size women. I don't know if it's because plus size women think that we aren't suppose to wear foundational garments, or if they think they don't make them in our size or what...but those back views have caused me to steer clear of knit dresses...until today!

See there are just more and more gorgeous knit fabrics out there...and I can only make so many cardigans or twinsets! Well, actually I can make quite a few more *LOL* but I really want to try out a knit dress...cause you know how much I love a dress! So Butterick had this pattern in their $3.00 sale a couple of weeks ago and I bought it...and I'm so loving Club BMV now because the actual price of the pattern was $2.70.


As you can see it's a simple straight dress with long sleeves and a very low v-neckline. It was a cute style and Fabric Mart had their knits on sale for 20% off with a PR Membership discount...the two ideas ran together to become this:


Please understand that I am simply incapable of making a pattern straight out of the envelope. This dress is lined and has a lacing up the front that I think gives it a totally different vibe than the dress pictured on the pattern envelope...

Okay some stats:
Fabric:
2 yards of ITY polyester/lycra knit jersey
2 yards of a nude knit lining from Metro Textiles

Notions:
3 yards of 1/2" satin rattail

Construction Changes:
1. First this pattern goes up to a size 22 with a finished hip width of 47" - I need a little more than that. Originally I was going to do a pivot and slide and add some inches...but as I was putting the pattern pieces back into the folder, I saw that the hip width of the jacket was 57" which was perfect. So I simply laid the two pieces on top of each other (jacket first then the dress) layered them with a new piece of tracing paper and traced a new front and back dress piece by using the top of the dress and the bottom of the jacket.



2. I added a lining to the dress body using the knit lining fabric from Metro Textiles. This was done by eliminating the front and back facings the pattern provided and laying the lining and the fashion fabrics right sides together...then stitching them together at the neckline. I clipped curves, turned and pressed then added some topstitching to the front neckline to prevent the lining from rolling to the outside.



3. When constructing the dress shell, I added stay tape to the shoulder seams of the fashion fabric but not to the lining. I also added a 1/2" piece of stay tape at the u-neckline to give it stability when I sewed the fashion fabric and lining together and when clipping the seam line in that area.

4. All of the hems were pressed closed using stitch witchery. Then using a double needle, I topstitched the hems. The stitch witchery was used to stabilize the hems and prevent the wavy hemlines that can sometimes occur when using a double needle treatment.



5. After trying the dress on, I noticed that the fronts were flopping around. Of course in the pictures on the pattern envelope, the fronts lay perfectly flat. I guess on my "real world" body that just wasn't happening...so I got the idea to add a lacing to the front. It would hold the front pieces stable and provide an interesting detail.

My first thought was to make eyelet circles (a stitch on my machine) to use for threading the rat tail...but my machine did not like this fabric no matter what I put under it to stabilize it. Then I realized that keyhole buttonholes if made small enough would do the trick...so that's what I used. I make 8 keyhole buttonholes...4 on each side of the dress front approximately 3" apart. After threading the rattail through the buttonholes, the floppy dress front issue was resolved.


This is a very simple dress to make. It will give you much instant gratification and a lot of bang for the buck. I was surprised that there are only three reviews for this on Patternreview ...two for the dress and one for the tunic top & camisole. I am sure that my plus size sisters never even looked at the pattern, cause I sure didn't before it showed up in the $3 sale!

However, I love the finished dress. I love the way it fits and how comfortable it is to wear. I love the lining because you can't see my foundational garments beneath it and I would be comfortable walking down the street knowing that no one is going to be staring at my backside. The dress pattern comes with a camisole but since I had a RTW one available I decided to wear it with the dress.

This dress was envisioned as part of a set of 4 garments. Right now laying on my cutting table is my TNT Burda cardigan and a skirt cut from this brown knit that I purchased from Fabric Mart at the same time as the printed knit. My aim is to get a mix and match knit wardrobe from these pieces for the transition into the spring/summer season!

One last shot...and I'm back to my sewing machine!!!


More later!!!


67 comments:

  1. Oh, I like that print! Your dress looks great on you - I bet it's comfy.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Carolyn, I love everything about this dress! The fit, the colour, it's all so flattering.

    ReplyDelete
  3. That dress looks fantastic on you! It's incredibly flattering, and slimming, and i love that fabric!

    ReplyDelete
  4. This dress is great, I love how you solved the floppy front problem. The laces and the fabric make this otherwise plain dress into a knockout!
    It looks very nice on you.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Beautiful on you! Great fabric. I am also jealous of your large cutting table !

    ReplyDelete
  6. Looking great of course! Love the fabric.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I soooooo agree about the back-view issue!

    This dress is WONDERFUL! I love how you used the keyhole buttonhole stitch to create a nice lacing (and I think the lacing itself goes great with all of the lines and circles on this dress.

    Heck, *I* might even decided to make a knit dress...

    ReplyDelete
  8. I love the dress! I have a pattern for a knit dress in my stash I have not tried yet. It is McCalls 5752 from Palmer/Pletsch. It has a gathered inset at the waist that goes around the back. it is designed to hide the hip fluff and other unmentionables. Patti Palmer said she designed it so she didn't have to worry about what she looked like from behind. Check it out.

    ReplyDelete
  9. The lacing is very clever. It honestly looks like the pattern was drafted that way.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I like the way you made the pattern work for you. It not only saved you a lot of work but kept your lines accurate. Not that you need my opinion, but the dress looks really great on you. Love the idea of lining the body of it.
    I am not familiar with "rat tail" can you explain?

    ReplyDelete
  11. I agree that dress is fab,I am so digging the fabric too!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Carolyn, another winner! It's perfect for transitional wearing.

    Faye, rat tail is a type of cord that you can buy by the yard. It's round and looks satiny. I used it to fill in piping and sometimes for jewelry cord in addition to the way Carolyn used it on her dress. It comes in a variety of colors.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love your dress, it looks wonderful on you. You always know just the right trick for a perfect outcome!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Carolyn, that looks great, and so comfortable! I had to go to the Butterick site to look at the line drawings. I figure the only way that dress lay flat was with velcro... Your lacing solution is brilliant.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I am loving the way that you look in that dress. I had checked the same fabric out but wasn't sure of the scale. Your picture helped me to decide to add it to the stash. I wore a knit dress today that had a lining and I am now a fan of this technique.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Carolyn,
    This is so nice - what a great idea to line a knit. I have been afraid of the lumps and bumps, so haven't attempted a knit dress for myself, but yours is so inspiring! One thought - would some clear elastic in the front v help with the gaping? Great job!
    Tammy in WI

    ReplyDelete
  17. Carolyn - once again you've got a winner! I love the garments you turn out. I can't wait to want to sew again :) g

    ReplyDelete
  18. Love the lacing in the front - very sexy without showing too much.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Cool, cool, cool! Love the lacing and the fabric and it looks like you might have a knit dress TNT there, too.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Absolutely love the dress. You look fantastic. And that fabric is to die for. Another winner!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Good job... once again! I like how you did the lacing, good tip! Not sure that I would have even thought of using the key hole button hole!
    The color sure looks nice on you!

    ReplyDelete
  22. I love the finished look too!! The fabric is so nice.

    ReplyDelete
  23. I love that fabric and the dress looks great on you!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Oh, Carolyn that looks great! I love what you did with the fabric and the pattern. I'm sure you'll get a lot of wear out of that one, struttin' down the NYC streets.

    ReplyDelete
  25. This is me, oooooooing and aaaaaaaaaahing! I love it!

    ReplyDelete
  26. Oh Caroline, that is cute, cute, cute! I gotta get me over to the Butterick site 'cause I've never seen that pattern and I'm liking it a lot. As always, you look mahvalous dahlink!

    ReplyDelete
  27. The dress looks fabulous on you...I love the laced up neck line idea and the fabric is gorgeous......

    ReplyDelete
  28. I have to say, this pattern was kind of "eh" to me..until I saw your version with the lacing! Wonderful idea - it opens up so many more style possibilities (using different ribbons/cording as the laces) as well as fixing the floppy neckline issue. Great save!

    ReplyDelete
  29. The fabric is lovely!! It suits you well.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Carolyn, your talent and ability is amazing. What you see in a pattern or a piece of fabric makes me green with envy. It is also inspiring to see you take a pattern and make it your own. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Wow Carolyn! This dress is a winner! You look so good in this and that fabric is fantastic!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Bravo on the dress and everything you said about plus size women and foundational garments.I'm a plus size and I know hat you are saying. You are proof of how good, one can look in with the right foundations and beautifully fitted outfits.

    ReplyDelete
  33. It's a winner
    I love the fabric, the fit, everything

    ReplyDelete
  34. You are singularly responsible for me making and wearing more dresses! (Whether you'll you punished or praised for this remains to be seen – LOL!) I love this dress!

    ReplyDelete
  35. That looks fabulous. I love the lacing.

    ReplyDelete
  36. You look great in it. Love the fabric. I'm plus size and would have never considered a knit dress for all the reasons you mentioned. I think I'll give one a try. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  37. As always you hit a home run with this one. I love how you line things and now you lined the body of a knit dress. Thanks for the inside details here.
    The foundations do make loads of difference at smoothing things out.
    Somehow our generation forgot what our mothers knew about undergarments. I am spending lots more these days on underwear.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Fabulous! You sure do know how to work a pattern! You look absolutely stunning in this dress. I think there will be lots more interest in this pattern from now on :)

    ReplyDelete
  39. Wow, Carolyn, way to rock the details! I love it when people think beyond the pattern. And what a great print. Kudos!

    ReplyDelete
  40. I have always loved this pattern. However, I'm intimated by sewing knit fabric.

    Your dress looks really cute on you. Maybe I will give this pattern a try.

    ReplyDelete
  41. I could live in knit dresses. I've never tried that knit lining before, but I really should, especially for fall/winter garments.

    Nice save with the lacing!

    ReplyDelete
  42. OOOH! Thanks Carolyn!
    I'm a longtime lurker and am a plus size sewist, about to attempt her first knit dress. So happy to see your lining technique and the stitch witchery/double needle trick.. just in time for me!

    ReplyDelete
  43. Wow! Wow! Wow!
    that dress looks great on you.

    Did you compare it to any of your TNT top or dress patterns? I recently compared a simple tunic pattern to my sloper to find that I am not the same length from top of shoulder to bottom of the armscye, say. I've lately found it easier to look at the technical drawings and just copy a style onto it rather than fuss with flimsy tissue to make it fit.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Welcome to the wonderful world of knit dresses - you now have a whole new subsection of stash to accumulate! The dress is gorgeous on you, and your result is going to force me to start lining my knit dresses. Beautiful fabric, too. Of course.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Carolyn, this dress looks fantastic on you. You did a wonderful job with the extra details!

    ReplyDelete
  46. That looks fabulous on you! I love your lacing solution.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Well, there's not a lot of point to sewing if you have to make it straight out of the envelope, and not customized for you! Your version is pretty.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Fabulous. Lining the dress was a good idea and the lacing very clever. Looks great on you. Yep, definately a new TNT ;)

    ReplyDelete
  49. Love the extra details you added to the dress!!Loving the fabric.

    ReplyDelete
  50. well, nothing not more to add, it's a wonderful dress. You look so good.

    ReplyDelete
  51. That looks really neat on you! I love the lacing detail and adds so much to the dress! I love that print as well.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Great dress. Love the idea of using the lace up to fix the neckline. I have this pattern. I never thought of using a knit. Ummm. You've got me thinking!
    My goodness Carolyn. How do you keep up with all these comments?

    ReplyDelete
  53. Whatelse can I say, gorgeous as ever. Very very beautiful

    ReplyDelete
  54. Here is my comment for you:

    I love the print. So smart to use the lining. I need to do that for more knits, 'specially because they are so thin.

    I love how you saved the front with the keyholes. You give me hope that muslins aren't always needed :)

    Oh! And, smart to use the jacket to modify.

    ReplyDelete
  55. Very clever and creative! Love your new dress!

    Lynda in LV

    ReplyDelete
  56. Just wanted to tell you not to let anybody bum you out (Dead Tired blog). If they do, they win. I'm also a plus size beauty, and I love finding someone else who is my size and wants to make fashionable and properly fitting clothes. Maybe I'll get the courage to post on Pattern Review.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Carolyn, That dress is a winner! You look fantastic in it. I also like to add linings to most of my dresses so the inside is finished and I don't need to worry about the slip. Looking at the dress I was imagining what it would look like worn over tops of other colors. I think it would look fantastic worn over a red/rust top.

    ReplyDelete
  58. Your killin' me with those references to Fabric Mart and the sales! Especially since I kept eyeing that knit myself.

    Love the dress and the eyelet idea. I have this pattern. In fact, I believe I have the cardigan cut out somewhere in my "to sew" pile.

    It ended up to be a great dress style-wise that looks great on you.

    ReplyDelete
  59. Everyone has said it all... what a gorgeous dress and like the idea of the lining. Just maybe I could work up this pattern for instant gratification.

    ReplyDelete
  60. The dress is PERFECT and I love how you made it your own by adding all those wonderful details!! You look faulous, Carolyn, the dress suits you so well!!

    ReplyDelete
  61. That's a really great dress, what a fantastic print!

    And may I add - what an incredibly fantastic smile! I think your's is one of the best and brightest I've ever seen!

    ReplyDelete
  62. Carolyn,
    I'm a little late in commenting about your fantastic dress, but I've been without a computer. I really like the style, fabric, and details, and as always the dress looks perfect on you. I hadn't really thought of a lining for this knit. Will it be too hot to wear in the warm weather? I am in TN where it is much a much hotter climate than NY/NJ. Anyway, beautiful job.

    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  63. I'm the latest to be late to add a comment, Carolyn! I'm just catching up. I'm so happy that you (hopefully) bought up all of that knit fabric from FM, because I love it! and I love what you chose to do with it, too. It's a very flattering style on you.

    You're so great at documenting your sewing process--I always enjoy getting inside of your sewing brain as I read it.

    Kathryn

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! It is so appreciated.

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails