Pattern: Vogue 8943
Pattern Description: Dress has bias shoulder and armhole binding, fitted bodice, scalloped lace-edged neckline, three-quarter length sleeves, waistband yoke, flared skirt and purchased ribbon belt. Fitted slip has shoulder straps, and side slits. A, B: French darts, underlined and back zipper.
Pattern Sizing: 16 and then scaled down to fit.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yup.
Were the instructions easy to follow? Very easy – and exceptionally simple too, just a lot of precision.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I love the couture elements – finishing off the edges with lace trim and all the scallops. I hate arm hole binding with a passion though.
Fabric Used: Sequin Mesh overlay (6 yards – fussy cut), Cotton Flat Lace (5 yards), Silk Organza (5 yards), Gold Lace Trim, Silk Chiffon (inner bindings)
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I did not do the slip. I wore a corset and petticoat under, so I actually took in the pattern from a 16 waist to about a 12 – darn thick arms! I also made it about 6″ longer.
I changed the belt from a simple ribbon to a satin sash with the trim adhered to it (finding out something is fusible when you can’t get a needle through it is quite possibly the best moment in the world).
I also made the dress with three layers instead of two – because the sequin mesh was so lightweight and sheer, this did not produce any issues. So I had Silk organza as the base, then the lace (which is stable – would not recommend a stretch, even mechanical), and then the sequins.
I did do the applied lace scallop to both the lace and the sequin layer. I used two different white & gold scalloped trim laces for the sequin layer, so I cut away the white of those and just used the gold edging and applied that to the hems. The smaller scallop was used at the neck and sleeve, the larger scallop at the skirt hem.
Finally, I added a button back (19 buttons in total) in addition to the zipper. I did use button loop tape, which was inserted with the zipper to ensure the closure was tight and hid the zipper. It worked!
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Yes and yes! I feel like this would be fun to make as an anniversary dress in a few years for my cotton anniversary. In all honesty, although there is a lot of precision work to the dress, it is not beyond an average sewer’s abilities, you just have to be methodical.
This pattern is gorgeous and the pieces sewed up in about 8 hours. The finishing (hems/buttons/zipper/fitting) took a little bit longer, but was well worth it. I’m so happy with my wedding dress!