For some reason, I managed to make a number of little mistakes on this one, but I don't think they show in the final product. I had to use Fray Check not once but twice on this project, which is a first. It's along part of the seam where the zipper is installed, since there wasn't enough width to finish it the way I usually do. I also used on the top corner of the button placket, where I poked my point-turner (aka a knitting needle) through while trying to turn it. Argh!
I also managed to make it too narrow at the waist somehow. I ended up letting out the back darts a little to give myself some breathing room. I think less dart-y darts at the lower back may actually be a good adjustment for me. I have narrow shoulders and routinely increase the darts (or add some) for the shoulders/upper back, but never thought about adjusting the back waist.
I was worried that a lined, dirndl skirt made out of quilting cotton would be too bulky at the waist with all that gathering, but I trimmed the seam allowances as much as I dared and it seems to work. I like this skirt shape, and it's a nice way to change up a pattern. And in this case, it allowed me to avoid sideways birds on the skirt!
The bird placement is part planning, part luck. I really should have cut the two bodice fronts separately for max birdage. (And to avoid birds with their heads eaten by darts in my armpit. Oops.) I suppose that I should just be happy that I cut everything right side up, given the high error rate on this project.
Here's an inside-out shot. The lining is a cotton batiste, as per usual:
I used to try and attach the entire facing edge wrong sides together and turn. But with those two sharp angles, it's enough to make you crazy. I've decided I'm just as happy sewing the top and bottom (the two vertical stretches) wrong sides together, and then just turning the the horizontal edge under and top-stitching. Since I imagine that explanation made very little sense, perhaps a photo will help:
There were some pockets on here too but I decided I didn't like them. For one thing, the placement wasn't quite right, but I think they made the front of the dress a little too busy with this print. So now I have some orphan pockets: I'm hoping they will be a fabulous addition to some skirt or dress someday.
I tried tried photographing myself without a camera, but those shots came out far more awkward. I need something in my hands! Here's a better short of the camera: it's a little grubby, but it still works great.
It's a 1950s Herbert George Co. Imperial Mark XII. They came in black, red, gray, tan and light green too, but this light blue color is my favorite. There were also "official" Girl and Boy Scouts versions of this camera.