Goodwill to all men!

I was determined to make my own dress for Christmas this year. For one thing, I feel like I’ve worn all my party-type dresses to death, and secondly, we’re coming up on my one-year anniversary with sewing, and it seemed like an appropriate was to celebrate!

I got the pattern free with Sew Magazine – in fact, I’d been having a rough time and my Mama came home with a copy for me. The pattern is New Look 6723, and I decided to make view C, because I loooove an elegant boat neckline-sleeve combo in an evening dress.

In the magazine, they’d made a version out of silk dupion, listed at £20 a metre. Hmm. I can’t afford that kind of fabric, but it looked beautiful. Thankfully, I managed to find a likely substitute in the form of some faux silk dupion from eBay. I have to say, I was a little worried it was too good to be true – was I going to end up with three metres of shiny sweaty nightmare? But the fabric is actually really nice. Of course, you can tell if you touch it that it isn’t silk, and it doesn’t drape like silk, but it is still really lovely. I bought the colour “emerald” (fitting), but it has gold-y highlights and doesn’t feel too clingy and sweaty.

Want to see?

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It wasn’t difficult to make, although I don’t think my gathers are beautiful. Does anyone have a sure-fire technique for gathering fabric? I don’t understand how to make it even, then I get annoyed and give up. It took a little while – in fact, I finished all the hand-hemming on Christmas day morning!

The bodice is lined (but not the sleeves or the skirt, which suits me) and it was pretty nice to fit. I strongly recommend checking out this tutorial for doing a full-bust adjustment for princess seamed bodices. I think I might still need to take some material out between the shoulders and the “apex of the bust”. I think that’s why there are some wrinkles in the fabric there.

I paired it with gold eyes, nails, and earrings to bring out the gold tones in the fabric.

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I love the pattern and I want to make it in some other fabrics too – maybe a classic floral cotton? Let me know what you think!