This was the project I spent the most time on; it took me a couple of days work to get it cut out and put together so that I could wear it to work today. I bought this Jennifer Lauren Handmade Laneway Dress pattern a few months ago; traced it off during my Christmas holidays, but only got to work on it this week.
I used this beautiful flannel that has been in my stash for at least two years. I've always had it in mind for a fit and flare style dress, but I was never quite satisfied with a pattern match for it. When I put it together with the Laneway, I realized it was exactly what I wanted, though I'd have to make a few modifications for a flannel winter weight dress.
I started by extending the sleeves -- can't have short sleeves in a warm flannel dress! I drew them to my preferred length, but found when I tried it on that they were still two inches longer than intended, and quite wide at the hem. I shortened them and also narrowed them slightly, and found that worked perfectly. I was going to add a grey sleeve band to match the turn down facing, but the effect wasn't so good -- as my husband noted, it truncated my already short arms. So I left the sleeve hem plain!
|Also got to wear some of my amber jewellry!
I also lengthened the skirt by an inch, and most importantly with a flannel dress which is always going to be worn with tights, I added a skirt lining. I have a very large amount of this silvery grey lining in my stash, which comes in handy for most anything. And as I like to say, every dress needs a silver lining!
Aside from those changes, I made minor adjustments -- shortening the back bodice by an inch, and the front by about 1/2 inch. Taking the side bodice in after trying it on -- I'd cut a size 14 at shoulders and 16 at waist, as per my usual size adjustments, so I don't know if it's this pattern or simply the fact that flannel stretches a bit that required that little bit of taking in. In any case, taking in each side by 1/2" made the bodice fit much better.
I used some grey cotton scraps from my stash as the contrast facing (first used for this set of skirts). I love this grey and wish I had more!
After wearing this for a day I can feel that I'll have to make a couple more adjustments the next time I sew this, primarily taking a dart in the upper back bodice edges, since it does gape a bit when I move around and I get a little draft right down my back (which isn't necessarily always a bad thing...)
Otherwise, I am a huge fan of this pattern and can't wait to make a summer version as well. I enjoyed sewing it up; it's logically laid out with good instructions and diagrams to follow. It is comfortable, flattering, and work appropriate so I know I'll get lots of wear from it. So nice to finally use one of those cherished stash fabrics!