Saturday, January 7, 2012

"flower rock" darling ranges dress

Here she is, my Darling Ranges dress. 

Ever since I saw Paunnet's version of this dress, I knew I wanted one. It's a nice little button-up V-neck dress with half-sleeves finished in elastic.

Yea, we see you, center back crease.

This pattern is by Megan Nielsen, an independent fashion designer and pattern-maker based in the USA. Most of her current patterns are for expecting mamas,
 but the Darling Ranges Dress is one primarily targeted at... non-mamas? No. Both mamas and non-mamas who just happen to not be... expecting? Why is that so difficult to write? I guess I don't know an appropriate word that means opposite of pregnant. Anyway, Megan designs and sells lovely clothing for cool people like you and me, so go check out her current winter collection.

There's no facing in the bodice (a great thing), and I really liked the way the neckline is finished with bias tape. Yea, bias tape, my nemesis, but I can deal with it when it's only visible on the inside. The fabric I used is black and white rayon from ZinniaSnipSnap on Etsy. The floral pattern reminds me of those sunglasses-clad dancing flowers from the 90s.

Now my Google search history is filled with terms like "battery-operated dancing wiggle flowers in sunglasses with tiny instruments." What else is new. They still make these things in Japan, of course -- the world capital of questionably cute and completely useless robotic toys. They're called "Flower Rock," in case you're interested.

The pattern doesn't call for interfacing in the button placket. It just so happened that the day I was working on it, I received the Colette Patterns "Snippet" (weekly sewing tip) in my e-mail. It was about, guess what?, interfacing buttonholes. It said, "Not all patterns suggest interfacing buttonholes, but it's an important step to take [to prevent sagging]." I was like, "Is this a test?" So, I interfaced my buttonholes. I hope you're happy, Sarai!

Okay, she seems pretty happy.

Somehow I cut the bodice too short, so it's now kind of an empire-waisted dress. I'm not a fan of empire waists, so I'll mostly wear this dress with a thicker belt that creates the illusion of a lower waistline. This dress is comfy as all get-out, btw.

The fabric isn't sheer, but since it's white I thought a skirt lining would be a good idea. Plus I'm sick of making unlined skirts that stick to my tights as I walk (mustard skirt, I'm talking to you). I simply cut the same skirt pattern in the lining fabric, stitched it together at the sides, then attached it to the skirt at the top when I machine-basted the gathering stitches. 

Hey, serged edges! My new serger and I have gotten along so far, but every time I go to Joann's they're always completely out of black and white serger thread. I was too anxious to get started on this dress so I just used the black I already had. It's probably a no-no on white fabric, but I don't think it's that noticeable from the right side.

I want to make a sleeveless version in a darker color next!

Tell me: is this pattern in your stash yet? Get on it!

linked to: sew country chick
Threading My Way women's dress link-up