Completed: Simplicity 2145

10 Feb

Happy Monday, everyone! I have some good news and I have some bad news. The bad news is – I didn’t make it through the first round of Project Sewn. Bummer! Although, I’ll be honest right now – as soon as I saw who I was competing up against, I immediately figured I’d be one of the first to go πŸ™‚ On the flip side, my girl Oona made it as the winner for the first round! YAY OONA GET IT GIRL. Can’t wait to get some celebratory drinks with you when I’m in NYC next month!

Speaking of my short stint with Project Sewn – I’ve received lots of sweet messages and comments since I was eliminated, and I am absolutely floored by all the support. Aw! You guys! I think some of you were more upset about the elimination than I was πŸ™‚ I’m actually a tiny bit relieved to have that heavy workload off my shoulders. I’m not gonna lie – it was tough trying to coordinate all that sewing (for PS, as well some other ~secret~ side projects, stuff for the Mood Sewing Network, not to mention this blog!), and it got a bit stressful. SO MANY UFOS ALL OVER MY SEWING ROOM. Which is certainly a first world problem, don’t get me wrong, but it is what it is. I really don’t know if sewing contests are for me at this point – I always feel too rushed when I’m making my shizz, and half the time I end up with something that isn’t up to my personal standards. I really loved participating in Project Sewn, and I don’t regret my decision to join one bit, but but I think from here on out, I’ll be staying out of contests like that πŸ™‚

So, anyway, the GOOD news – my pink dress is already finished and photographed, and since I’m not one to let a perfectly good project go to waste, I’ll be showing y’all a whole DAY earlier than originally planned. Woohoo!

Simplicity 2145

The color is a deep magenta, although it looks quite red in these photos.

Simplicity 2145

This is Simplicity 2145, which is one of those ~be your own designers~ Project Runway patterns. I’m just going to throw this out there – I don’t like the PR patterns. Sorry! The drafting is fine for what it is, but the method of construction (and instructions) is usually pretty subpar in my experience. I suppose the drafting is more important than the instructions (ok, I KNOW the drafting is more important than the instructions, ha), but they are generally intended for “emerging designers” and I think they just set a bad example. I’ve sewn lots of these patterns in the past – they usually have some neat style lines that I don’t find replicated in other patterns – and if I was dealing with those instructions as a beginner, I think I’d give up on sewing entirely. Lots of unfinished edges, missing information (I can’t remember the particular pattern, but I do recall one that spent 3 paragraphs explaining how to sew a dart, and then forgot to tell you to close the side seams. Really!), and the yardage requirements are waaaay too generous.

I guess my point is – if you want to sew these patterns, great, but make sure you have a good instruction book close by. That is all.

Simplicity 2145

ANYWAY, back to the matter at hand – I think this particular dress turned out great! I really love the front wrap and the pleated skirt, and I think it’s a cute (and flattering!) look. I believe this pattern was intended to be a knockoff of Princess Kate’s engagement dress, although let’s all take a moment to acknowledge that she looks 1000x better in hers than I do. Must be the silk jersey πŸ˜‰

Simplicity 2145

My version is made from wool crepe, which I picked up at Textile Discount Outlet while I was in Chicago last year. It was cheap, too – I think I paid less than $10 a yard for it (and it’s pure wool, according to my burn test. Nice!). I used a scrap of baby pink Bemberg Rayon to underline the bodice, and left the skirt unlined (only because that’s all the lining I had). I decided to go with underlining because the thought of trying to draft a lining for this style gave me a headache, haha. Underlining also meant that I got to keep the facings without there being a lot of bulk. I like facings.

Simplicity 2145

One thing I will warn y’all about this pattern is that it runs LARGE – like, super duper large! Holy shit! According to Simplicity’s size chart, I should be wearing a size 10. Well, I know how much they (and the rest of the Big 4) looove to make things way too fucking big, so I double-checked those finished measurements and ended up sewing the 4. So freaking ridiculous!

On the flip side, I didn’t have to make many adjustments to get a good fit. I did make a muslin – this has become a very regular thing for me (more so than usual) because I’ve learned that my posture means the back is too large at the top and needs a flat pattern adjustment. So I have to muslin everything I make now. It’s a pain for sure, but I will admit that it is REALLY nice to not have a big gape at the back of my neck! This one didn’t need much of an adjustment – I did a 3/8″ rounded back adjustment, and the fit at the back is pretty much spot-on now. The only other alteration I made was to shorten the sewn-down part of the skirt tucks. They were a little too long on me and it just looked weird.

Simplicity 2145

The dress also has two tucks at the back, which upon viewing these pictures appears to hit a somewhat unflattering spot right above my ass. Oops.

Also, for some reason, I had a DEVIL of a time inserting that invisible zipper. I don’t know why – invisible zips don’t really give me much trouble! – but my feed dogs were trying to make it gather on one side. So weird! I’ve since inserted several invisible zips, and they go in flawlessly. I don’t know if it had something to do with the wool crepe or what. If you super zoom into this photo (which, I mean, uh, don’t. Haha), you can see that my waistline seam at the zipper is off by about 1/4″. That was the closest I could get it, after ripping the zip out like 4 times. Stupid zipper!

Simplicity 2145

Another thing I don’t care much for about this dress is that the sleeves are SUPER tight and it’s difficult to raise my arms very high. So it’s ok for wearing if I’m going to be sitting all day/not moving around, but that’s about it. I need to rip them out and reinsert them and see if that helps. I’ve been told that if the sleeve isn’t eased in the right areas, it can make it difficult to move your arms, but I was pretty careful about that while I was setting these in. I’m thinking it might be another pattern adjustment that I need to address, because it happens a lot to me. Anyone have a suggestion on what I should be looking for? The armhole is high enough (I believe) and the circumference around my bicep is the correct size, so I’m not sure where to go from here, or even what to research.

Simplicity 2145

Sleeve issues aside, the rest of the dress is right up my style alley. You can get a better idea of the true color here – it’s a very rich, deep pink, and it looks super fabulous with all the wool crepe-y texture.

Simplicity 2145

Simplicity 2145

Simplicity 2145

Wish I’d actually had the correct thread color on hand – I had a pale pink, which in retrospect was a horrible decision (you can sort of see it at some seams when I’m wearing the garment, ugh), but at least it matches the lining, I guess?

Simplicity 2145

Oh yeah, and if you were wondering why my hair looks SO good in these pictures – I’d just had a haircut and that blowout they gave me was LEGIT. God, I wish I could afford regular blowouts haha! As it stands right now, my hair doesn’t even look like this anymore. I had it bleached last week, and now it’s neon orange. More on that later πŸ˜‰

A couple things before I dip outta here:
– Remember Joanna Baker, she of the sweet sewing prints giveaway? Well, I just heard back from her (she’s been busy getting married since then!) and she has listed the 3 sewing prints in her shop for a limited time. I know some people were interested in purchasing them, so if that’s you – here are the dressform, button collection and thread prints.
– Also, She’ll Make You Flip is currently offering a nice discount – use the code VALENTINE25 for 25% off your entire purchase, good through 2/24/14! Someone should go buy this and hang it on their wall, because that is EXACTLY what I would do with that pattern. Ok ok, in all seriousness, how cute is this pattern?? AND IT’S IN MY SIZE. EEP, my neverending quest for the perfect stripe fabric continues!


82 Responses to “Completed: Simplicity 2145”

  1. goodbyevalentino February 10, 2014 at 8:15 am #

    So sorry to learn you were eliminated from Project Sewn, Lauren 😦 Looks like you made up for it with a lovely new Valentine dress! Very pretty and perfectly sewn as always.

  2. ekabby111 February 10, 2014 at 8:31 am #

    Well don’t you look swanky. Sorry you were eliminated. If you want, I’m sure I’ve got an animated wombat or something that I could send you for a consolation prize.

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:20 pm #

      Don’t you dare offer a consolation prize if you’re not intent on delivering. You know how i feel about animated wombats…

  3. Little Leys February 10, 2014 at 8:48 am #

    Fab dress! Project Sewn’s loss is our gain πŸ™‚

  4. Aubrey (@Aubreyland325) February 10, 2014 at 8:51 am #

    I think I bought this pattern and it’s hiding in my stash! I totally bought it because of the Kate Middleton knockoff appeal, figuring I’d get it done in some kind of ponte knit or jersey… no dice, my MBA has literally killed my sewing drive. RIP, it’s been like a year since I did anything other than repairs. Womp womp.

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:21 pm #

      At least you’re getting your MBA, which is pretty freaking awesome! I’m just sitting over here with my highschool diploma, ha! πŸ˜‰

  5. Sarah Bee February 10, 2014 at 8:55 am #

    I have had so many issues with sleeves and this blog post saved me. It was so frustrating because I knew the sleeves were fine and the bodice was fine but when I put them together I felt very “fat man in a little coat.”

    I’ve found that this adds some bulk to the sleeve so I had to make some adjustments to the width. But it makes things so much more comfortable to wear. I can raise my arms!

    I’m really sorry you got eliminated. I thought you (and Oona) blew the competition away! Love me some Dolly.

    • Claire February 10, 2014 at 9:31 am #

      So glad you posted this! I’m having the same problem as Lauren, and this tutorial validates what I was thinking.

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:21 pm #

      This is very helpful, thank you!

    • Craftastrophies February 10, 2014 at 5:34 pm #

      Oh this is perfect! I am just foraying into fitting myself properly, and I spent three whole days muslining a top last week, trying to fix this problem. What I ended up doing was lopping the sleeve cap ease off, and adding 1/2″ to the armscye all around the back, AS WELL AS doing a broad back adjustment. I think I still need to do a bigger broad back adjustment (or maybe just cut a bigger size and grade down after the armscye) but that most of the problem is sleeve angle – I need to bring the rest of the sleeve up, not the sleeve cap down.

      I did SO much googling but I just didn’t know what I was looking for! Thank you!

    • JamieDSC February 11, 2014 at 3:28 pm #

      Oooh, you really got me thinking about sleeve cap height now. The slash and spread method I always use for widening my sleeves also has the effect of shortening the sleeve cap height, and I was just reading in some book that the author preferred some more complicated method because messing with the sleeve cap height was “bad”. Now I feel better about my method because maybe I am actually fixing two problems? Yay, thank you!

  6. Marchelle February 10, 2014 at 9:08 am #

    I voted for you and Dolly 3 times. Glad to hear you’re not sweating it. Looking forward to see the new hair. Rumor (twitter) has it you’re going blue? Do you ever worry your hair won’t match a good part of your wardrobe? That would be my biggest fear… not to be a downer, just curious! πŸ™‚

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:24 pm #

      Blue it is! πŸ™‚ And, you know, a lot of people ask me about that (clashing my hair with my wardrobe) (or, rather, they did ask me a lot when I was still dying my hair weird colors!), it also comes up when people see my tattoo, since it’s hot pink and blue. Honestly, I’ve never thought you needed to match your hair to your clothes… I mean, I wear black with my brown hair, right? I also figure that if I like a color to commit enough to wearing it as part of my head, it’s probably a bit part of my wardrobe as well πŸ™‚

      • Craftastrophies February 10, 2014 at 5:36 pm #

        I miss my blue hair! I loved it. The only thing I found was that I started to wear less blue and more red, since blue blended in more and obviously that wasn’t what I was going for! But I basically wore the same clothes I already had, just in different proportions.

      • jenables February 10, 2014 at 5:54 pm #

        Lauren!! I’ve had blue hair for years. Recently I went blonde, realized it was killing my soul and went a very blue turqoise. Much better. I’m a hairdresser too. . It sounds like you love your hairdresser, as you should! The problem with underlying orange pigment when you want blue, as you are probably aware, they are opposite colors. . Which means it can go brownish. Depends on the type of color you use. If it’s at all possible for your hairdresser (unless they already do! )you should very seriously consider using goldwell elumen. It is amazing and if you take care of it, it will not fade. Elumen seals up the hair and makes it shiny and healthy and unlike some of the other elumen colors blue and turquoise can be bleached right out to platinum blonde. I have a mix of half turquoise and half blue all over right now. . Also the turquoise is super pigmented. Best product ever, and it is ammonia and peroxide free. . Driven into the hair by magnetic force. Not cheap but well worth it. It is not totally opaque though so it does matter what you are putting it over, and you either have to prepare the hair or let it rest a day or two if it’s been bleached. Have fun!

        • LLADYBIRD February 11, 2014 at 8:07 am #

          Yay blue hair! I haven’t had blue hair in over 10 years, so I’m really excited to go back (and crossing my fingers that it looks as good as it used to, ha!). I’m actually doing the color myself at home – I had it bleached in the salon because I had some box color deposits that meant my hair needed to be watched. But I can do the color at home. The roots are white and yellow, so I think they’ll take a turquoise pretty well… and the orange at the bottom should be fine with the darker blue I have. I actually don’t have access to Elumen dye – I wish, it sounds amazing! – so I’m using the stuff from Hot Topic (not my first choice… I’m a Special Effects girl at heart and apparently they have DISCONTINUED the line, wtf?!). As much as I love my hairdresser, I don’t know her well enough to ask her to use her license to get color for me. However, if YOU would like to… πŸ™‚ haha just kidding! Let’s see that blue hair now! πŸ™‚

  7. Candace February 10, 2014 at 9:10 am #

    What a lovely color and the wrapping across the front of the dress is just beautiful!

    I can totally sympathize with the “omg I can’t raise my arms, help!” issue. If you are continually having that issue it’s probably the sleeve head, not the easing. The very first thing my drafting teacher taught us was how to correct sleeves from store bought patterns. If you make a line across from underarm to underarm on your pattern and then measure up to the top of the sleeve cap, a normal (female) human being this should not be higher than 4 inches, unless you’re a giant person. To lower it you need to spread the inches you took out from the height, back into the front and back curve until your armscye and sleeve head match again. You won’t believe the difference in mobility and it’s an easy flat pattern alteration that stays the same across most all set in sleeves.

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:25 pm #

      That makes sense! It sounds pretty similar to the link that was posted above, so I will be investigating these as soon as I have a change to start tweaking muslins. Thank you for the input!

  8. Sarah February 10, 2014 at 9:13 am #

    All those details make for a very pretty dress and the fabric looks quite cosy too! shame about the sleeves but at least it’s not noticeable, but I hope you find a solution!

  9. Tilly February 10, 2014 at 9:32 am #

    Lady, this is GORGEOUS!! Super impressive and absolutely stunning. I love all the pleat detailing.

    Re. the tight arms, often this is caused by the scye being too low, which sounds counter-intuitive but can usually fix the problem. Looking at your photos (which obviously isn’t an accurate representation of how it looks when you move in it), the part that looks potentially snug on you is just below your shoulder – maybe it’s all those weights you’ve been lifting? Maybe try slashing open the pattern at the top of the sleeve and make a toile to see if that corrects it?


    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:26 pm #

      Ha ha! Weights! Just my 12lb cat πŸ˜‰ Seriously, though, thank you for your suggestion! I thought the armscye was high enough, but perhaps it is not, so I will be double-checking that.

  10. sallie February 10, 2014 at 9:32 am #

    Dude, I was so sad to hear that you were eliminated from Project Sewn, especially after doing such an awesome tribute to Dolly P! But I can totally relate to your feelings of relief, too. Just WATCHING sewing competitions give me anxiety!!

    This dress is just so darn purdy! Love the color and the interesting wrap/gather detail. And that wool crepe looks absolutely heavenly – like you could make anything out of it and it would immediately take it up a notch! Also – sleeves are my arch nemesis.

  11. JamieDSC February 10, 2014 at 9:40 am #

    Way to make me want to make a dress from a pattern that you admit has tons of problems!!! Ugh. I had neon orange hair briefly circa 1999… the nude hunting jokes were so *insufferable* that I ended up dying it back during deer hunting season. (Every dude who said it thought they were being so original too…)

    I was just at a pants fitting class where the teacher called the armscye your two “arm crotches”. Lol. I guess she was trying to make a point that you can have as many fitting problems there as in a pants crotch, but I still don’t know how to fix any of them! My completely non-professional guess… From the front your shoulder seam looks like it is in the right place, but from the back it looks a little narrow. Maybe you need a broad back adjustment? Can you give yourself a hug, or does it feel like you’re going to burst the back seam if you try? Also, I’d say a little more ease in the sleeve. Muscles make your arm circumference get bigger when you move, so if they are tight when relaxed by your side they are too tight. Personally I must have large deltoids or something, because if I raise my arms at right angles there is a bulge on top of my arm just past my shoulder joint that makes my sleeves feel really tight around the top. I need at least an inch of ease to be able to lift my arms.

    • Catherine from Canada February 10, 2014 at 1:19 pm #

      I was going to suggest a broad shoulder adjustment too, something I have to do to most patterns. Is your left shoulder wider than your right? The seam seems to be sitting a bit higher on your left shoulder than your right.

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:30 pm #

      Oh god I HATE crappy hair jokes! I would always get questions about if the carpet matched the drapes… like, EW GROSS I DON’T KNOW YOU AND YOU’RE NOT BEING FUNNY, PLS GO AWAY. Not looking forward to those comments again!

      I actually think I might have figured out the problem, based on your comment and a few others… I don’t think my back needs a broad back adjustment, as I think it’s actually pretty narrow, but I did pull out some shoulder width to get the center back to fit so maaaaybe i need to add that back at the back arm hole. Something new to muslin, ugh! But yes, thank you for your comment, super helpful!

  12. ShanniLoves February 10, 2014 at 9:40 am #

    I was so sad to see you go from Project Sewn! I loved your outfit cuz well I love Dolly!! I was totally floored at how well those freaking pants fit!! I found myself revisiting the post just so I could stare (and not in a creepy way) at those bad ass pants! I can totally relate on the sigh of relief you must of felt though. On a whim I entered a Fabric Mart contest and was totally drained by the time it was over. Some of the stuff I made was not up to par in my book, and I felt totally rushed at times, staying up all hours of the night, my god it was like 9 weeks long! But the knowledge I gained(and a big surprise on me, I did win) paid off for all that work. I don’t regret it either but as far as entering another contest, I don’t think they are for me. I just don’t like the feeling of “I have to”, kinda takes the fun out of it.

  13. Miss Demeanour February 10, 2014 at 9:46 am #

    This is lovely doll and nothing like a new frock to brighten up ya day. Also I think there might be something about the sleeves on PR patterns as so Zo and I had same issues with 2444. They cut super high.

  14. mokosha February 10, 2014 at 10:02 am #

    beautiful dress! really interesting pattern, so flattering.. love the color too (and, yes i know it’s not the ‘real life’ color hehe, but i still love it)

  15. Juli February 10, 2014 at 10:36 am #

    Oh man! I’m sorry to hear about Project Sewn. 😦 Your dress looks great though! Jeepers, I want that in my closet. I have a few of those Project Runway patterns in my stash that I got on sale at Joann’s because they look really cute, but I haven’t sewn any of them up yet. That’s good to know about the instructions. And the wacky, uber-tight sleeves. Sleeve-fitting can be such a pain in the butt, can’t it? Excited to see your new neon hair too! πŸ™‚

  16. Louise P February 10, 2014 at 10:40 am #

    Beautiful, beautiful dress, you look amazing in it.

  17. Lori February 10, 2014 at 10:51 am #

    This is such a pretty dress and all your adjustments look great. The PR patterns, just wear me out jumping all around trying to find the instructions you need.

  18. janeclemo February 10, 2014 at 11:02 am #

    Beautiful as usual! I love the style lines of this pattern and I think I might actually pick it up for myself. Great job!

  19. ingridsykora February 10, 2014 at 11:02 am #

    Is the sleeve seam hitting the end of your shoulder bone? In the close-up picture, it looks like the shoulder might be a bit too narrow. I saw that you’ve already received a lot of comments about how to fix the arms, but that might be another (quick/easy) thing to check.

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:32 pm #

      I am thinking I may have narrowed the shoulders too much when I was tweaking the upper back fit, so that is the first thing I’m going to try when I have a change to make some muslins. Thank you so much for your help! πŸ™‚

  20. Kim February 10, 2014 at 11:04 am #

    Gorgeous dress! Shame you were eliminated, you did get my vote though πŸ˜‰ but now you have more time for other projects which is always good! I love the pleats in this dress.. And I’m jealous of you outside without tights/sweaters/scarves/coat!

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:32 pm #

      Don’t be too jealous – the polar vortex came roaring back later that evening and we’ve been dealing with disgustingly low temperatures ever since! Screw you, cold weather! ahhh!! haha

  21. lisa g February 10, 2014 at 11:16 am #

    you all had such great and thoughtful projects, i could have given my vote to ANY of them! sorry to see you out of the competition! anyways, this dress is beautiful! i have this pattern stashed away but had forgotten about it… love the neckline details.

  22. Emily February 10, 2014 at 11:32 am #

    Cute dress! I’m by no means a fit expert, but following this tutorial by Sunni has gone a long way in fixing the straightjacket problem for me:

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:33 pm #

      I will definitely look into this, thank you!

  23. maddie February 10, 2014 at 11:49 am #

    Well, if you ask me, you look way better than Princess Kate. As a side note, I was wondering about your orange hair, but I guess I’ll have to wait until you tell us more.

    As for the sleeve opening… if you look back at my posts in December, in one of them I’m wearing a dress I made for a friend’s wedding 2 years ago. The sleeves are similar to yours, and on my first fit, I had the same problem. Even though the bicep fit with a little ease added, I needed a lot of extra room in order to lift my arms. The problem with this is that once you add enough, the opening looks like it’s winging out when your arms are down. It’s a catch 22, which is why I haven’t made a dress with those sleeves again. Unless it’s a knit sleeve, the bicep can’t be ‘snug.’ Have you ever noticed this in RTW woven blouses? The sleeves always wing out.

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:37 pm #

      That makes sense. Bummer on woven sleeves! I’m hoping I can figure out some magical mystery flat pattern adjustment that will solve all my problems, short of making everything out of knits (as much as I love knits… I also love wovens, ha!)

      • maddie February 14, 2014 at 6:43 pm #

        wovens can definitely be a son of a bitch compared to knits.

  24. Rochelle New February 10, 2014 at 11:58 am #

    I don’t even know why I bother sewing Big 4 Patterns anymore lol! I just bought a new one to make a pair of pants, and after all the extra ease, the smallest size is still too big. I’m going to have to trace the patterns and try to alter it. Uhg. Oh well I guess. On the bright side: your dress is fabulous!!!

    p.s. I think your first submission for Project Sewn was perfect and so true to your personal style. Too bad it wasn’t a contest based on garment wear-ability! I’m with you when it comes to contests though. I honestly don’t think I’d say yes to something like that. Waaaaayyyy too much pressure!

    Can’t wait to see those WIPs emerge πŸ™‚

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:38 pm #

      Yeah, dude, the ease drives me crazy! I am by now means the smallest size, but I sure am in those Big 4 patterns… which makes me feel bad for all the people who are smaller than me 😦

      And thank you! I thought my submission was pretty true to my personal style, too, so I’m glad it portrayed that way πŸ™‚ even though I didn’t win, I have an ACE outfit that I will definitely wear, so that’s win enough for me!

  25. Philippa February 10, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

    Lovely dress, and great hair!!

  26. oonaballoona February 10, 2014 at 12:03 pm #

    please tell me we’re getting to see ALL of the UFOs, ya hot patottie. i’m all over those PR patterns, but now that you mention it, i *do* tend to raise an eyebrow at some of the directions…you look like a vixen.

    AND OHMAHGERD I LOVE YOUR ORANGE HAIR. can you rock some outfits avec neon before going blue? pretty please??

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:38 pm #

      Anything for you, girl! β™₯ πŸ˜‰

  27. Lisette February 10, 2014 at 12:37 pm #

    Oh man oh man. I have that pattern and wow have you ever made me want to sew it up right this second.

  28. weefrills February 10, 2014 at 1:07 pm #

    So flattering! I hope you’re taking comfort that your Dolly contest entry was awesome!

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:39 pm #

      As long as I love it, that’s really all that counts, yeah? πŸ™‚

  29. Jo February 10, 2014 at 1:33 pm #

    I couldn’t believe you were the first eliminated, but everyone was pretty amazing. Back to the dress though, it’s so lovely. I desperately want some wool crepe! Oh and I am stupidly happy that you need a rounded back adjustment, just like meeeeee, alteration twins! Lol. I wish that was where my tweaks ended though! Your dress is super cute and well done ignoring the crap instructions and sizing!

  30. Stacy February 10, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    I was sad to see you go from Project Runway, but totally understand the feeling of relief. I have a hard enough time just trying to sew along with it. πŸ™‚ This dress looks great on you, and as you have had a ton of comments on how to fix the arm, I have nothing to add on that. πŸ˜‰

  31. Kelly February 10, 2014 at 2:05 pm #

    This dress is gorgeous! Love the colour, and that wrap front looks fab! It’s a real shame about project sewn, would have loved to see what else you came up with, but I can totally understand your relief at not having the pressure. I’m not sure it’s the kind of thing I could handle. Probably shouldn’t add this pattern to my collection though – I already have Simplicity 2415 and 2451, 2145 as well might risk too much confusion!

  32. Chickeys February 10, 2014 at 2:19 pm #

    Your dress is beautiful! I love the interesting design lines that make it striking even in a solid color! I am having a hard time lately finding printed fabrics, so this pattern just shot to the top of my queue. And umm, can I please make mine in a magenta wool crepe too?!

    I’m also sorry you were eliminated so soon from PS — your outfit was sooo cute and Dollyesque! Can’t wait to see the other outfits though, especially the shoe one. πŸ™‚

    • Chickeys February 10, 2014 at 2:19 pm #

      BLERK — that should say “…finding printed fabrics I LIKE.”

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:40 pm #

      Yeah girl, do it! Let’s be dress twinssss haha πŸ™‚

      And y’all will definitely be seeing the rest of my outfits! Once I make them, that is πŸ˜‰

  33. Maris Olsen (@sewmaris) February 10, 2014 at 3:11 pm #

    Aww, too bad about Project Sewn. But I hear you on the contest pressure thing. LOVE your darling red Valentine’s dress!

  34. Kerry February 10, 2014 at 3:57 pm #

    Have to admit I wasn’t really following Project Sewn though I had seen a few outfit posts including your Dolly-tastic number, which was amazing. Shame you didn’t go further but maybe a blessing in disguise if you’re busy. Plus you made an ace outfit! x

  35. katboulder February 10, 2014 at 4:17 pm #

    I voted for you. I thought your outfit was awesome. Maybe the problem was that people don’t think of Dolly Parton as a style icon? I was really surprised that you didn’t stay – your outfit looked extremely well made, it fit great, and it was super cute.

  36. Neeno - Sew Me Love February 10, 2014 at 4:25 pm #

    This dress is beautiful! Looks great on you, even the weird bum tucks look alright!
    I put in an invisible zipper last night and for the FIRST TIME EVER I didn’t have to rip out and redo 4 times, thanks to your zipper tutorial, I experimented (aka read the Janome manual) and discovered that I CAN MOVE MY NEEDLE POSITION omg MIND BLOWN!! hat made my life so much easier and the zipper went i first time, no drama!

    • LLADYBIRD February 10, 2014 at 4:41 pm #

      Awesome! I’m glad my tutorial helped! And fuck yeah, isn’t moving the needle so amazing!? I’ve noticed that some newer lower-end machines don’t do that, and I think that’s just ridiculous!

  37. Laura February 10, 2014 at 5:01 pm #

    love this dress- and really appreciate your honest review of patterns! I am learning to sew and wonder if I am insane- or if patterns are skewed? The back of the pattern says one thing.. but then when I measure the actual finished project…it is way too big! Love your blog- big fan!!!

    • LLADYBIRD February 11, 2014 at 8:01 am #

      Oh yeah, that’s all that extra ease they throw in the patterns. You’re not insane – the patternmakers are! I don’t even use the body measurements anymore (except to lol over them hahahah), I just check the finished measurements printed on the tissue to fine my size. Works out pretty well that way πŸ™‚

  38. Marie February 10, 2014 at 5:56 pm #

    This looks so beautiful on you Lauren, way better than Princess Kate’s version ;o) Sorry about Project Sewn, but I’m glad you’ve dusted yourself off and have more time to sew the stuff you love ;o)

  39. Peggy February 10, 2014 at 8:21 pm #

    I’m sorry you didn’t move on in the challenge. You’re just adorable! So talented. Love reading and being inspired. .

  40. beebeesvintagedress February 11, 2014 at 6:54 am #

    Too bad about project sewn Lauren but I love your dress. I’ve been having invisible zip problems with crepe this week. I wonder if its something to do with the weight of the fabric. I’m gonna have to hand pick it grrrr… x

  41. beckyjopdx February 11, 2014 at 10:52 am #

    you’re such a doll.

    I have the same arm/sleeve issues. I just thought it was me….I get it sometimes in purchased clothing too, so a fix would be ideal for my own custom stuff. I always just blamed being a mommy and having kid-lifting biceps….lol.

    bummed you’re out of PS. obviously many of us are already fans of your flavors, so voted for you, but I also liked how actually wearable yours was…blame the pragmatic mommy thing but it’s true. I own a few pattern versions of those cigarette/capri pants; those are my style too.

    and OMG, this dress is fab.

  42. Dreaming of Avonlea February 11, 2014 at 11:45 am #

    This is so pretty – I love the crossover waist and what a fab shade of pink! x

  43. Pootle and Make February 12, 2014 at 8:11 am #

    What an elegant dress. The colour really suits you.

  44. Tasha @ By Gum, By Golly February 12, 2014 at 8:43 am #

    Oooh is this ever cute! I really like the color, too. The shape is really flattering on you, va va voom!

    If you figure out the sleeve thing I hope you let us in on it! I’ve always just kind of been under the assumption this was the price you pay for short set-in sleeves that look nice and trim and aren’t hugely saggy baggy.

  45. Jordan February 13, 2014 at 12:11 am #

    I’m so glad to see this all made up! It looks gorgeous. I have the pattern and have been considering it for an awesomely obnoxious purple fabric I’ve been waiting to use. Thanks for the tips on the sizing. Yikes!

  46. Maria Rydqvist February 13, 2014 at 12:46 am #

    Oh I am so sorry to hear you are out of Not only cause I LOVE your icon!!! I have been to to concerts with Ms Parton, going to a third this summer. This time as VIP:-) What ever that means besides my having bought a very very expensive ticket….

    But really, you are an inspiration!!! I have been reading your blog for a year, just about. And you have helped getting my overlock in use πŸ™‚ I have started to sew the tops I have been wanting. Finally.

    As a big fan of country music, honky tonk I have also FINALLY managed to get my husband to go with me to US and specifically Nashville!!!! We go there in October as an early combined birthday present to us both.

    Soooo, I thought to ask you about some tips as to where to go to really get a good dose of good music.
    I know, a bit impudently maybe. But. I got to try.
    Yours sincerely,
    Maria (from Sweden)

    • LLADYBIRD February 13, 2014 at 4:57 pm #

      YAY NASHVILLE!! October is suuuch a good time of year to visit, too, the fall foliage is always amazing around then πŸ™‚

      I have been thinking about writing a ~Nashville~ post to put up here, but in case that doesn’t ever happen (I’ve been in “planning” mode for like a year, ha!), check out Lower Broadway for the honky tonks/live music – specifically Robert’s Western World (which is the BEST), Layla’s Bluegrass Inn, Tootsie’s (kinda touristy, but you also kind of have to stop in at least once), the Wheel… really, anything on that strip. Second Avenue is good too, but it’s more for young college kids who like to party and less live country music. There is also Printer’s Alley, worth checking out. First and foremost, though, Robert’s!

      While you’re in town, make sure to try the hot chicken (everyone has their own, but my personal favorite is Hattie B’s in Midtown) and DeSano pizza (also in Midtown) πŸ™‚ And if you like beer, try some of the local ones – Yazoo, Blackstone, Jackalope – they’re all really good!

      I’ll try to elaborate more in a future post, but this should give you a start. Also, do not hesitate to email me if you want to chat further about Nashville. I LOVE this city and I love to talk about it!

  47. kimmie February 13, 2014 at 2:09 pm #

    Can I call dibs on this dress when you get tired of owning it. I love it

  48. Julie February 13, 2014 at 7:16 pm #


    I had to sew that black and white clown costume using that exact pattern once when i was a youngster answering an ad for a job in Boston. I told the person that I was a “costume designer” and she must have seen right through me. Next thing I knew I was sewing all these funky junky costumes for her in the back of her little vintage shop on Mass Ave.

    • LLADYBIRD February 14, 2014 at 8:01 am #

      OMG how cute is that! I would give a tooth to see one of those clown costumes you sewed up, haha!

  49. Gjeometry February 14, 2014 at 2:16 pm #

    Aw, sorry to hear you were eliminated from Project Sewn. But, I have to say, we may be twinsies yet again! I still havn’t finished my snakeskin stretch twill trousers, but have this pattern as one of four for folks to vote on as to which one I should sew next, up on the blog! I think the dress looks fantastic on you! It’s good to know about the sizing, according to the envelope, I am a size 8, so I think perhaps the 4 may be too big for me! I like your fabric choice as well, it has a nice heft and really suits the bodice lines of the dress.

  50. mertxelasierra February 15, 2014 at 2:17 am #

    Hello, Lauren! The dress looks nice, and you left me wondering about silk jersey and whoever makes the princess dresses. She is always superb, the tailoring of her coats is to die for!!! And the fabrics!! Regarding the pattern’s faults, I think it is worth to learn to make your own patterns. You don’t only save money, you get perfection, and it is a giant step beyond in the creative process, specially when the comercial patterns are not to be trusted at all.

  51. missjoiedevivre February 20, 2014 at 2:06 pm #

    This is really beautiful! The details on it are divine and I love the colour. I’m sure this would have done really well on PS. I’m still smarting over what was obviously a huge mistake in the voting, but I’m glad you’ve got some mental space back!

  52. Beth March 1, 2014 at 8:20 pm #

    I love the bodice and wrap waist! Beautiful!

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