Sunday, 6 December 2015

New Look 6299

Not for the first time, my inspiration for making a dress has been a pair of shoes - although I like to think that this one is a fair bit classier than the previous attempt!

I'd seen some shoes I really liked, which came in black (which was what I wanted) or dark red. Unfortunately by the time I got round to buying them, the black was sold out. I only have one dress which would go with the red, made from New Look 6070, so the obvious solution was to buy a red pair anyway, and make another dress to go with them. You know it makes sense!

Off to the fabric shop I went, and found this in the craft cottons remnants bin. It's by Windham Fabrics, from their 'First Ladies' collection, circa 1865-75. A slightly odd choice for a modern dress perhaps, but I liked it, and it went perfectly with the shoes.

Windham Fabrics 'Wheat', in red

There were two separate pieces, so I bought them both, and then went though my pattern stash to find something which would make the best use of the fabric. New Look 6299, view D lengthened and all in one fabric, pretty much fitted the bill. I wasn't convinced about the sleeve length however, and New Look sleeves are always a bit short on me, so I extended them to bracelet length.

Pattern envelope, view D is the bottom right

I wasn't sure which neckline I wanted, so made the dress up as if for the collar, and put it on Nancy.

Alright, but underwhelming

It definitely needed the 'pop' of a contrast collar. Now, several reviews of the pattern I'd read online mentioned the collar, mostly unkindly. It is indeed a strange shape.

Collar pattern piece

The pieces are sewn together in a way which creates a tab, which is then fastened with a button.

Instructions for making up the collar

I had some thin black satin leftover from a previous project, and used that to make the collar. Once made up, I decided that I didn't like the tab at all, so got rid of it. Not one of my better ideas, as it turned out.

Meanwhile, I decided to try something different with the lining. I made up the basic dress, minus sleeves, in lining fabric, leaving the centre back seam open for the length of the zip. Next I sewed on the facing, and cut away the excess lining fabric beneath it.

Lining and facing, ready to go

Then I sewed dress, collar and facing/lining together, as per the instructions, and slip-stitched the lining to the zip tape. This proved much easier than making up the dress as normal and then trying to wrangle in a lining.

Some you win, some you lose. This was when I discovered that the collar really did need that tab fasten after all. Without it, the dress has a very odd neckline; too wide for a normal neckline, but not wide enough to be a feature. The back meanwhile just looks a mess.

Weird, wide neckline - front

Weird, wide and messy neckline - back

So, I ended up making a separate tab from a scrap of satin, and attaching it to the collar so that it could fasten properly. If only I'd left well alone in the first place!

Collar fastened properly, and looking much better

I didn't want any sort of cuff on the sleeves, so just finished them with a wide binding of black satin, to tie in with the collar.

I'm really pleased with the end result, and think that it will become a winter wardrobe staple. With the shoes, of course! Sadly the weather has been far too dismal for the usual back yard shot, so here's the end result on Nancy.

New Look 6299 completed

1 comment:

  1. I have nominated you for the Liebster Blog Award! See here: http://asartorialstatement.blogspot.com/2015/12/the-liebster-award-my-nominations.html

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