Completed: Vogue 1395

Sunday, August 09, 2015

I've been house bound with glandular fever for over a week now, but luckily my sewing machine is only a metre from my bed, so in the moments where I've had a bit of energy, it's been pretty easy to get sewing. And here's what I've managed: the Vogue 1395, worn by a pasty looking me on my first outing in a while.

I'd seen some fab versions of the V1395 out in the blogosphere (shout outs to What Katie Sews, The Telltale TashaLladybird, Clever Tinker) and after making the Kielo Wrap Dress, I couldn't resist another tie-front dress. I bought this lovely drapey viscose especially for the project, and it was very nice to work with. It was quite slow in the making, but a fun sew with some really interesting methods of construction. It seems really straightforward now I've made it, but I put a lot of faith in the instructions at certain points, as my ill/tired brain couldn't quite envisage how it would work.

As a word of warning, the finished garment measurements on the back of the envelope are pretty unhelpful (only the back length of the dress and lower edge width are stated), so double check your measurements against those on each of the pattern pieces. I was ready to trace a UK16, but after checking the finished bust measurement on the bodice, I found that the 14 would be a much better fit.
Adjustments: I added 3 inches to the skirt and I'm really happy with the finished length!

The dress itself is quite a simple pullover, with an elasticated waist and short kimono-style sleeves. It's the back overlay that's really interesting. There's a slash line near the top of the centre back that you gather your fabric into. It's a bit hard to pick out on the picture with the pattern on my fabric, but it's a cool technique that I've never really seen before, and dead easy to do. 

I was totally confused by the instructions for attaching the overlay at the shoulder seams, and felt like I was matching everything up wrong. After doing one shoulder and turning it out to check, everything was fine, BUT then I got completely lost turning the garment round and round on itself just trying to work out how I had it before so I could do the other shoulder! Of course, I ended up stitching it with a big twist in the bodice, so out came the unpicker, and I had to concentrate pretty hard to get it right the second time.

I quite like how the dress looks at the back. You catch the overlay into the waist of the dress at the back, but I'd probably leave it free in future. It 'bags out' a bit and creates a bit too much volume in the back for my liking, particularly as there's already quite a lot of weight in that slash and gather line that feels like it's dragging the neckline downwards at the back. The weight of the fabric I used was perfect for the rest of the dress, but I'd be tempted to use something slightly lighter if I made it again to try and prevent the pulling/slipping feeling in the back.

A few more things... similar to many others who've blogged about this dress, I opted for french seams rather than double stitched seams as the pattern instructs - I think the finish is a bit neater. My fabric was thick enough that I could avoid lining the skirt too. A few reviews have noted how low the armholes gape, and although I agree, I think the overlay covers most of the bra flashage on mine when it's tied.

I feel like I've complained about this make a bit more that it deserves. I quite like the finished dress - it was the right amount of challenging to make and it's nice to wear - I just might do a few things a bit differently if I made it again. Here's to recovering from the ills fully and soon so I'll have more occasions to go out and wear it!

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  1. Your dress is gorgeous! And I absolutely love the fabric. Glandular fever really sucks, I had it when I was a teenager. Hope you're feeling better soon!

    1. Thanks Lynne - getting a bit of sewing done has been the only plus side to being ill/off work! Luckily I'm over the worst of it now - just the tiredness left. Hope you're well :) x


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