First up a massive thanks to Sew Essential for this month's fabric!! I had an image in my head of how I wanted my Simple Sew Ruby Dress to turn out and their lovely John Kaldor Ritual Jersey and soft stretch lace made it possible.
I wanted it to capture all the things I've been going for with my projects in 2017; Sexy, Sassy, Spooky. With an added dash of swishy and see-through! I am so in love with using lace at the moment. The back panels are see through enough to be sexy, but not blindingly obvious.
In hindsight, I absolutely WISH I'd used a layer of lace over the black front bodice too just for some extra interest. Definitely next time.
The pattern is super easy, definitely suitable for beginners. I made a few little tweaks to the pattern. I took out the centre back seam. As I was using a stretch fabric, I didn't need to be faffing about with zips. I cut the back skirt exactly the same as the front skirt as there was no need for seam allowances where I omitted the zip.
I also scooped out the back neckline a little more. Initially I was tempted to scoop it right down so that the back was literally two separate pieces just touching as they met the skirt. I freaked out a bit though, thinking the stretch lace was going to stretch right out of place and show my knickers off or something, then I had the bra strap panic so settled for a short seam attaching the two pieces up to bra height. Nice save eh!?
The Ruby Dress is designed for wovens, so I had to make a few adjustments to the pattern as I was using knit. I'm not going to lie, I winged it a bit and it was all a bit freestyle. I took a chunk out of the centre front bodice (about 2.5cm in total I would say), then an equal amount out of the skirt pieces from the middle of the paper pattern, not the side seam or front fold so that the skirt flounce would still be even. A further cm or so out of each back panel to allow for the stretch of the lace.
Instead of facing the neckline (bleugh), I used a 4cm wide strip of jersey with stretch running along the width and attached with the overlocker right around the back and front of the neckline, stretching out a little (and evenly!) as I went. This added the stability I needed to the back panels and a lovely consistent finish right the way round. Phew! Was so relieved when that worked!!
I then did the same to the arm holes, this time sewing the jersey strips into bands and stretching them around the armholes as I went. It was a bit fiddly, and yes, I did get a pin stuck in the overlocker (not advised). But we got there!!
Left the dress to 'hang' over night then turned up a narrow hem to finish.
So sleek! So stretchy! So shiny! So sassy!
Hope you like!
Location: Centenary Riverside, Rotherham
Currently listening to: Won't Make Love At All, Pokey LaFarge