The obsession of the moment is sewing.  A few months ago, I saw a class called “The Couture Dress” on Craftsy.  It was only $20 and I recognized the name of the teacher, Susan Khalje, from some articles I’ve read in Threads.  I know that I’d like to do some sewing with my handwoven fabrics, but I am very hesitant because nothing would be worse than spending hours upon hours weaving something, only to end up with a garment that doesn’t fit or that looks bad.

It took me a while to get around to watching more than the introduction video, and Robin decided to take the class too, and committed to coming over to work on things together.  She’s been over here a couple times now, and we’ve both made tremendous progress on our muslins.  This is where my muslin started.  Lots of baggy parts and puckers.

The bust was a bit too small, so I adjusted that, and then just had to take in the midriff section and fix whatever was going on with the shoulders.

With Robin’s assistance, I ended up adding two dead darts at the shoulder, just above the bust to remove excess fabric there.  I also got the back of the dress pinned up where it will help keep the dress on better, and the midriff taken in where it no longer bulged and gaped.

However, at that point, no matter how nice the dress looked when I was standing, it was terribly tight when sitting, and I don’t think very flattering.  It just doesn’t have a lot of shape for a body type like mine.  Last night I got some more muslin out and made up the circle skirt version of the pattern.

I think I’m getting closer to something that’s wearable and flattering for me.  I still am not in love with the midriff section.  I don’t want to eliminate it entirely because it just gives the dress a maternity look.  I do think I will cut it on the straight of grain and try again.  It’s currently a bias midriff, as the pattern called for.  It looks great in stripes and plaids where it adds some visual details there, but I am 99% sure I’m going to be making this in a solid color, so I don’t think it’s necessary.

I’m learning SO much about dressmaking techniques and about patterns.  One of the things I love is that as you learn the techniques, you don’t have to follow the pattern instructions–you just know what needs to be done!  I can’t wait to make more projects, and I also can’t wait for our swatches to come from Mood so we can pick our fashion fabrics and linings!

Oh, on these posts, feel free to tell me anything you think about the fit or the pattern.  I’m fully open to honest thoughts on what’s working and what’s not.