Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Attempting a Frankenpattern

Last night - I was determined I was going to sew something new and exciting.

I'm always inspired by bloggers who look at an item of clothing and replicate it with patterns they own - I adored Summerset's awesome version of an Anthropologie top! I wanted to try this approach.

I was going for a version of Elaine's Coffee-Date dress - but I was entirely too lazy to download, paste pages together, etc. So, I looked at a couple of patterns I own to loosely recreate the look.

The top - I used was Butterick 4987 - view C. I've made this before a couple of times. (Earlier version of View C.)

For the skirt, I pulled out my trusty Simplicity 4036 (I've made a zillion versions of this skirt.)

Basically, I was trying for something like this:

Umm, yeah. I cut out and basted my seams together, and uncovered a few problems. Aside from the fact that I don't know where my waist is, and the top was entirely too long - the biggest flaw here is that the top has a ton of ease built in around the waist, and the skirt is, of course, fitted at the waist. So - I have 6 excess inches of fabric. I'm trying to figure out if I should just adjust this at the side seams, or if it is worth adding a couple of darts for extra shaping. (But then, I'd have to mark the darts, and ensure the back top darts align with the skirt darts - a wee bit more complicated than I wanted.)

Still, salvageable. I should have an hour or so to work on it tonight - I'm hoping to get the fit adjusted, and get the zipper inserted. Tomorrow, I'll cut out the lining (gah, most hated task ever) and sew that. I'm aiming to have this dress done by Friday.


Clio said...

You are braver than me! I'm sure it will be cute when it's done!

Summerset said...

Thanks regarding my top!

Try basting the side seams first, you're right this would be much easier than darts in the bodice. Starting at the underarm slowly taper out the amount you need to the waist. Measuring the patterns first is a big step to making a Frankenpattern work - finding out before you cut if they'll fit together is good, but you know that now.

Another idea would be to gather the top at the waist and stitch it to the skirt, giving it a blouse like effect without the tucking, retucking, adjusting, etc. that a real blouse would bring. (One reason I'm not in love with blouses, too fussy.) You could then wear a belt with it and it would look like two pieces.

Summerset said...

Forgot to add, try the blouse on and mark where your waist is, or about visually where you'd want the waist to be before adding a seam allowance and trimming it off (I assume you'll need to trim length off the blouse before attaching). Those water soluble markers are good for this.