Wednesday, August 01, 2012

McCalls 6506 - The Bodice

The pattern description on the envelope's back is minimal - Dress has collar, collar and front band, fitted bodice with darts stitched on right side of fabric, pleated skirt, attached belt, self-carriers and stitched hem.


I bought this pattern back when it first appeared on McCall's website.  I loved it on first sight.  I just wasn't sure if it would work on my body.  But I've seen quite a few of these waisted shirt dresses on the retail plus size sites and I decided to take a chance.  After seeing a gingham dress from Landsend that was pinned to Erica's pinterest site, I rambled through my fabric collection because I knew that I'd purchased some large block linens earlier in the year.

I decided on this white/gray large gingham linen for the skirt portion of the dress...


My next thought was to use some of the white cotton pique that I'd acquired a few years ago.  But when I was going to pull the cotton pique from the collection, my hand fell on two lightweight white linens.  I went with the one that had been prewashed so that I could avoid that step.  So I'm making a two-toned dress.  Of course, I couldn't do something easy, right?

At first I thought I would make a muslin of the bodice because that's the part that troubled me the most.  Could I get a decent fit?  Would I be able to make it fit my very full waistline?  Will I end up with a wadder? I have to admit that I made minimal changes to the bodice.



  • I added an inch to the front and back bodice at the lengthen and shorten line.
  • Then I trued up the side seams.
  • I made a rounded back adjustment to the back bodice piece
  • The shoulder seam was shortened by 1.5"
  • I omitted the front and back darts.




When I realized that I had at least 2 yards of the white linen, I decided to go ahead and make up the bodice from the fabric.  I had plenty left to recut either the front or the back if needed and I thought I would get a better impression using the fashion fabric.
  
So I cut the fabric out and basted it together...here is a bathroom shot of me checking the fit...



(I hate bathroom shots because they are so unflattering!
But it works for seeing if the top will fit)

I'm encouraged so I will take the bodice apart and underline it with a cotton batiste because the linen is a little sheer.  

Bodice sewn and waiting for the skirt

Next up is the skirt...gonna have to work out that pleat placement...

...as always more later!





17 comments:

  1. Waiting eagerly to seeing the finished dress , it will be gorgeous with your fabric choice. I made this dress last month and have worn it 3 times already, it's such a flattering pattern

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  2. Cute pattern. Liking your choice of fabrics too.

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  3. Oh yeah, the self mirror shot where you are trying to check fit is no fun! I am intrigued by the external darts & pleated skirt, though. It should be really nice.

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  4. I'm watching this anxiously- I'm not sure a true shirtwaist would suit me and I want to learn from your changes- great fabric.

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  5. Oh, this will be so cute in white and gray! The sophisticated colors will keep it from looking too "I Love Lucy". Can't wait to see the finished version!

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  6. I have this on my to-get-pattern list. I like the fullness of the skirt. I've had no success with prior shirt dresses. Thinking the too straight skirt was the culprit. Looking forward to your dress.

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  7. So proud your doing this pattern.. I have seen it done on several blogs and it is very pretty. Can't wait to see the final dress.Love the fabrics.

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  8. This will be very pretty and shirtwaist dresses are so popular now. I think making it in the pale grey/white will make it very sophisticated.

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  9. As always, I will follow along as you sew this dress, and learn so much about fitting along the way. Thanks Carolyn for sharing your expertise!

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  10. Very cute pattern and looks like you're off to a great start too! What a neat idea to make it appear as separates! Can't wait to see the completed project!

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  11. I'm very curious to see how this turns out. I have made a couple of shirt waist dresses now but have not been completely happy with any of them. I'm still searching for the perfect pattern! I like all the details on this one. I love that large block linen, too!

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  12. You are off to a great start. I only wish I could get away with minimal bodice adjustments. Yours looks very good.

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  13. I continue to be in awe of your pattern fitting skills. I can't wait to see this dress completed. I know it will look awesome on you.

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  14. Can't wait to see the final product and the final review. It is my plan to make this for early Fall...which is closer than I think! Great fabric choice!

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  15. Revelation! As a woman with 'a bit of a tummy', it never occurred to me to just leave out the waist darts for a better fit. It's taken me a few days to recover from this obviousness! This is gonna be lovely.

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  16. I have a feeling it's going to look just great! Can't wait to see the finished product :)

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  17. That is going to look SO good! I just love that over-sized gingham...and because of the colors, it won't look too "Ellie Mae!"

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