The dress is a flattering fitted shape, with a high waistline and a gentle A-line skirt. The bodice has bust darts and dart tucks at the front and darts at the back. It also has pretty gathered sleeves and has an invisible zip.
This is the third pattern I have made from the marvellous Tilly and the Buttons' book "Love at First Stitch". As usual the pattern is clearly written with step by step photos and detailed instructions. I found this a relatively easy make and I love the fact that Tilly clearly explains anything that you might be unsure about such as darts, or inserting an invisible zip.
The pattern recommends 1.5 metres of 150cm wide fabric, I squeezed this out of 1.2 metres with no problem. I used a 100 % cotton that I bought from myfabrics.co.uk. The fabric only cost me about £7 - bargain. I purposely used something inexpensive as I wanted to treat this as a "wearable" toile.
Tilly has her own system of measurements. I made size 4 based on my measurements and graded out to a size 5 in the hip area which I'm glad I did. It's a fairly good fit apart from some gaping at the back of the neck. The bust is also a little tighter than in the image in Tilly's book.
The gaping didn't appear to be a problem when I tried the dress on before inserting the invisible zip so I'm wondering if the material stretched out of shape when I inserted the zip? I also think that I need to tackle a full bust adjustment next time as discussed in my blog post here. I also have trouble reaching the top of the zip to do the dress up so not sure what fitting issue this indicates. Something to do with the position of the armholes? Any ideas?
The only head scratching moment I had when making this dress was when I could not get the bodice and the skirt to align at the darts, After half an hour or so, I finally figured that I had sewn the skirt back pieces to the front the wrong way up. Doh!
All in all this pattern is a winner, and I will definitely be making this dress again with a couple of adjustments.