Progress on Vogue 8766 and honest feedback really needed please.

I’ve been working away on Vogue 8766.  Its been rather irritating actually as I was rather underwhelmed on the fit of this pattern, it is clearly based on a very different shape to mine.  In contrast the bodice of Simplicity 1873 (which I just realised I’ve never blogged) fit me very well (and Simplicity patterns in general seem to fit me well once I do my standard alterations for no-shoulders). Plus I had to do the most massive sway back adjustment I think I have ever needed to do.

The extra adjustments are no doubt in part due to the muslin being in a stable cotton and the actual dress being an open weave lace with very drapey silk underlining.  So once the dress was mostly assembled I had to do my “method” of making adjustments as I sew which consists on trying the offending item on about a thousand times, pinning, checking, basting, checking, sewing, repeat, repeat, repeat.

I finally came up with something I am almost happy with. Almost.  The neckline and sleeves on me looked so frumpy on me, which led me down the internet rabbit hole of googling “what is frumpy” and “how to stop a dress from looking frumpy”.  After said googling I lowered the neckline slightly and removed the sleeves, which seems to make a difference.

I need to tweak a couple of things – namely the neckline is stretched out slightly on one side so I will be sewing some tape to the neckline seam to bring that in again (involves having to undo and restitch the bias facing) plus the waistline position at the back needs to be moved a bit as it somehow manages to still be a bit wonky on one side.

My other disappointment has been despite my care, the join of the lace
on the front bodice is rather more visible than I would like.  Le sigh.
You can see it as the darker strip running vertically down not quite
the centre of the bodice. Can you see it? Does it look as awful and
“home sewing” as I think it does?

This fabric is rather special for me as its the first thing I ever won when I started blogging about my sewing.  I really really want to do it justice but I am feeling the universe is not agreeing with me at this point.

So I need to choose – do I finish fiddling with getting the fit and finish perfect (as perfect as my current skill level can make it) which is a few hours worth of sewing or do you think that the join down the front makes that a waste of time?  This would still make a lovely pencil skirt – I’d just take off the bodice and add a small waistband.  I have no fabric to recut anything – just tiny scraps of the lace, the elbow length sleeves I removed and a very small amount of the silk.

Thanks in advance for any and all feedback.


  • Sew Little Time

    how does it look on you? with skin tone showing through, is the CF seam as visible as it is with dress form blue?

  • The underlining is a pale blue silk which doesn't really stand out on the dress form but yep it is as visible as what you can see in the pic.

  • Gabrielle

    It's a gorgeous fabric! The CF seam is not that noticeable to me BUT I don't have any couture-level experience, and I quite like contrast in a garment – eg mostly perfect but with an unfinished hem. In that vein you could i giess make a feature of that seam somehow, but I'm not sure if it would look nice to you – something like a vertical piece of the lace down the outside CF? Good luck, I hope you find a solution you're happy with!

  • Thanks Gabrielle. I was thinking of adding a strip somehow to cover the join too but not sure how to go about it. And lol. I don't have any couture level experience either. I went through a stage toying with the concept but have realised that for me as a home sewer it is not achievable or required and I am content with the occasional catch stitch of a hem. I'll leave the couture to the people who actually know what they are doing. I just am trying for a wearable dress, hopefully.

  • First, this is lovely fabric and with all the trials you've had the dress does look very nice.
    Now, yes I can see the seam… not sure how easily I would have picked it out had you never said anything. How do you plan on wearing this dress? With long necklaces or scarves? Will be that noticeable when you are wearing it and in movement?
    One rule I remember is if you can't see it from 4 feet away it's ok because anyone closer than that to you isn't looking at your clothes. Except maybe if you're in a room full of sewists. 🙂

    The key here is what will make you most happy? If no matter what you do that seam will annoy you, make that baby into a pencil skirt. It is super gorgeous and deserves to be worn. Don't talk yourself into something you're not happy with because we all know where those garments end up and it would be a crying shame to let that languish anywhere!

  • barbara

    i never noticed it until i read about it, so if you don't tell anyone, it isn't there. i think that if you try to cover it up, you lose the overall simplicity that makes the style and lace work together. but if your goal was to have a stunning special-occasion dress, then you could embellish the dress with a scattering of white and crystal beads on the area that appears darker and take your bows.

  • Thanks for your comment Barbara I really appreciate it. I agree about being careful about not trying to cover it up with anything fussy and letting the lace speak on its own. I'll try out the idea of beading – I've never done that before but it could look lovely provided I can do it well enough. It is a special occasion dress so I want to save it if I can.

  • Em thank you so much for your well thought out and considered reply. It really helped me to work out where my brain needs to be on this project. Even the "worst case scenario" of making it a pencil skirt is still a winner so I just need to decide if I can live with the bodice flaw or not, you hit the nail on the head of making sure whatever I do I end up with something I will happily wear. More pondering to do but I feel like I have more direction now.

  • barbara

    be sure to go through all layers to 'anchor' each bead and do each one separately so if one falls off it can be easily replaced.' another reason to do them singly, is so you won't see connecting threads. i would love to see this dress completed whatever you decide to do.

  • Ina

    What about some small fabric covered
    buttons at the center front seam? You could cover the buttons either
    with your lace scraps or just with the blue silk. I think this would
    lead the attention away from the overlapping lace part, but keep a
    simple look. And you could easily pin it to test if you like the

    I hope my sentences makes sense to
    anyone, I rarely use the english I learned in school 🙂

  • Janelle, the waist seam would be visible unless the fabric "repeat" is unbroken, and it is very hard to do unless you have lots of fabric to play with. I'd add a wide belt or a sash, this way the eye will not expect a repeat and it will look very organic.

  • Hi Lena! Not the waist seam, I'm ok with that. There is a vertical join in the lace on the bodice, just a bit off centre. I had to piece it as I had barely enough fabric. It looks darker due to overlap. I need to tidy up the position of the waist seam but its the join in the front bodice that is causing me to head butt my sewing table.

  • Great idea. Thanks for your suggestion I will try it. And perfect english too. I would never have picked that english wasn't your native tongue.

  • Oh I see. I didn't even notice at first, you've done a great job matching the lace! I don't think it is that visible, to be honest, but if you add a belt or anything else to draw an eye away from it, it will virtually disappear.

  • Thanks Lena. 🙂