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Patrones Freesoul Maxi dress

August 23, 2009

2 must-haves in one: a black dress, a maxi dress. Patrones mentioned 1,60m of fabric are necessary for this pattern but this must be overestimated because I lengthened the pattern 20 cm and was still able to squeeze it into 1,4m of poplin bordered fabric I got at the Holland market for 2€/m. I have a faible for bordered fabrics. What also helped is using ready-to-use bias instead of self-made. This was my first time doing smock and I’m not turned off, to say the least. The straps were supposed to be regular adjustable straps, like on a bra. I changed that so as to be able to wear them classic or racerback style. Big plus of this dress: can be worn braless, up to a small C-cup, I think. I wear it with a strapless one. This is a real summer dress: maximal comfort and A/C integrated.

Anybody interested in doing this dress, here is how I made it:

1. interface half of each pattern piece 4

2. smock the back with spool elastic thread. Sew 14 1-cm spaced lines

3. Sew the darts on piece 6, hem the neckline, pleat as indicated and sew the pleats in place.

4. Fold piece 4 as indicated, righ sides together, insert the front ties and sew the bottom end (B). Turn right side out, press. Sew to piece 3 between A (upper end) and B (this is important, do not sew border to border, leave seam allowances) just like a bias i.e. right side of piece 4 and wrong side of 3 together, than turn around, folde in and topstitch.

5. Make the pleats as indicated on piece 3, apply to piece 6 and baste or pin at base.

6. Make box pleat on piece 1 as indicated. Apply piece 5 to piece 1, 4 cm away from the upper border and sew. Flip piece 5 up and baste to skirt. Sew skirt to body, press, sew side seams.

7. Sew bias to the neckline and back (do not stretch the smok in the back while doing this), making sure to leave an excess in front for the straps.

8. Apply loops for the straps at the back with or without lingerie loops.

9. Hem the skirt and apply the buttons.

I did not have any major fitting issue. Idid take it in slightly under the bust in order to avoid looking pregnant. I’m not sure if the dress being too loose there is due to big sizing of the pattern or if I should’ve done the smoks a little tighter in the back (no idea how I would’ve done that)? In any case, this is no fitted garment so I’d say it was a nice pattern to make as first non-child Patrones pattern. It was not my last.

Now the pictures:

Sorry for the weird look on my face: I’d just got back from work on a hot day.

Here I am wearing the straps raceback style (my favorite).

Smocking in the back

There are supposed to be three buttons on the placket above the knot but since I made the knot out of the bordered part of the fabric, I thought 3 buttons on top’d’ve been too much. The knot is not functional, merely decorative (can’t cinch the waist).

This is the front underlayer.

There’s a box pleat under the knot. Beside taking in the sides, I sewed an elastic there to bring the extra fabric closer to the body and avoid looking pregnant from the side. It worked.

Here’s what the border of the fabric i.e. the bottom of the dress looks like.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. August 24, 2009 02:03

    Cute dress! I love the fabric.


  2. September 11, 2009 00:57

    Elles est magnifique ta maxi dress, j’adore le côté ethinqiue du tissu 😉


  3. September 22, 2009 00:50

    I do love this dress! If I lived in Europe, it would only be for a week. We’d be so broke from hitting the fabric stalls. I wish we had that institution in our area. There used to be sellers on Maxwell Street in the 1950’s and 60’s. I doubt they are there anymore. Real estate got too expensive. Cordially, Nehmah


  4. October 13, 2009 04:56

    I’m in love with this dress!!!



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