I had this Liberty needlecord in my stash for quite some time and had been waiting for the perfect project- and decided this was it.
First sewing step is to stitch the front & back pieces together. It suggests 3 steps - sew& trim, over lock, then top stitch. I followed this but not exactly - as I wanted to do some fitting fine tuning before overlocking & topstitching. So I sewed the pieces that make up front & back together down the princes seams, then tacked the other seams together on the largest setting on my machine so I could check the fit. I have to admit that when I sew princess seams I don't pin- I just pin at the notches, sew with the most curved fabric on top and ease it into position between the pins as I go. I then put it on my dress form and played around with it.
I was seriously happy about the fit at the back without any alterations, but the front looked a bit loose, so on the reverse I pinned the seams further in and on the front from the bust to the hip. I noted the side seams also looked like they needed some alterations, but I ll fine tune that later.
I made my adjustments to the fit, then I overlocked & topstitched. I would highly recommend not diving into finalising those seams until you refine the fit. The reason I love princess seams so much is you can get such a great fit with them, so I would definitely allow yourself the opportunity to do that. For topstitching I used Gutermann top stitch thread in navy. I sewed closer in than the 10mm suggested, probably more like 6mm.
My adjustments to fit...
I was quite happy how my top stitching was looking! I only went for 1 row as I felt the fabric was quite busy enough!
I decided to add some piping too- I decided down the front, at the cuffs and across the back 'v' shape of the yoke. I've never done piping before so I read a few tutorials on line and had a go. I discovered my 'stitch in the ditch' foot as I call it was perfect.
For the button band down the front, I did this differently to the pattern,. I put the facing pieces on the front, not the back of the main fabric so I could do the piping and have the contrast button band showing. For the piping, I sewed piping on the top of one piece first, using this foot:
I put binding on the cuffs and used a bit of scrap fabric to go on the inside, as per pictures below.
The finished sleeve with piping on the edge.
Last job, buttons - or in my case snaps. I love these Prym jeans snaps and I hate sewing buttons so easy choice!! I used the Prym 15mm Antique Brass Anorak snaps with the Prym vario pliers which I highly recommend. This is how I use them for perfect results.
First up you use this little piece of metal in my fingers and give it a hammer in the right spot to cut out a hole for the snap to go through.
Put the snap piece in the pliers. One side holds firmly in place so put that one on top.
I finished off the hem and I was all done, Rosa was ready. Some pictures of the finished dress below. I'd highly recommend this pattern. I wore my dress yesterday and its super comfy but feels very stylish too. I love the fit- there will be more of these for sure! Top tips would be to ensure you plan in fitting of the princess seams and I'd also double check length in case you want it longer - I really wouldn't want it any shorter, I only did a hem of about 5mm, next time I may cut it fractionally longer to give myself a little more room for hemming.
Thanks for reading, Any tips on getting my piping better are most welcome
Messy Essy Makes