My latest project for the Fabricville blog is a little different for me - instead of a dress, I made a two piece matching outfit! Now I have separates that I can wear together for the dress feeling, or break apart to wear in other combos.
I saw this floral rayon online at Fabricville, but the online image was a bit deceiving -- it looked like it was all floral stripes, but when I received it, the stripes ran along either selvedge edge with the centre more of an open floral. If I would have looked more closely at all the images, I could have seen this ahead of time - but I didn't. Fortunately the print and colours are very cohesive, but it did mean that I had to make some decisions about how to lay out my pattern and how to use the print effectively. I didn't want the wide band of stripes running horizontally at the bottom of the blouse so I held the fabric up to me and asked for some opinions and finally decided that the stripes would run vertically down the right side of the outfit. I usually tend to put decorative elements on the left so it surprised me that this just looked better to have the stripe feature on the right!
This is a rayon voile, and it's very lightweight and shifty. It is super soft and smooth, and the colours are so wonderful bright and deep against the dark navy background. But it was tricky to cut since it is so slippery and light. I got it cut fairly well, but I am glad that the busy print hides any mild mismatches!
The blouse, Butterick 6731, was not a complicated project. And I only made a few minor changes. I shortened the body by 1/2", but did not shorten the sleeves at all. I raised the point of the V-neck as I thought it would fall a little low on me, and I'm glad I did. I also narrowed the centre of the neckline and the centre back by 1/4" each. The biggest changes were with the back darts - I found them extremely long so pinned them in to test it out, as I did not think this fabric would appreciate any stitch unpicking. I ended up shortening the upper point by one inch and raising the lower points by 4 inches - I wanted to leave more room across my butt ;) I then shifted the dart centre to just under halfway between, a touch closer to the lower point. That pulled in the excess across my back but left lots of movement across the hips. Because of this, I also omitted the side zip. I basted the side seam and tried it on to see if it would go on without a zip and it was very easy to do as long as I had the front ties untied. All in all, it took some fiddling but I really love it. It fits nicely and is a super soft and comfortable fabric to wear.
I added a lightly gathered skirt, using a pattern from my stash, Simplicity 1542 (a pattern I actually bought for the jackets). I thought this skirt had the right shape to go with the blouse. I had to alter this as well; first to add some length to it (3.5") and secondly, recutting the waistband as it is designed to sit 1.5" below the natural waist. I prefer my skirts at my natural waist so altered it to fit at that spot rather than below.
I added a side seam pocket to the right side of the skirt as well - the left has the zip so I didn't bother fussing around with that. I'm right handed so the right pocket is the main one I use anyhow! I was grumbling about the wobbliness of the fabric while cutting and sewing, but I love how it turned out and think this will be a very wearable set.