Tuesday, 31 May 2022

Sewing Masin Sicily Slip Dress

Amongst the hours of revision that defined my Easter break, in addition to making the most of family and friends, I decided that the time I spent sewing should be dedicated to something that was fun to make. Not something that I necessarily needed, but something that I wanted to sew just because. I have really liked the Sicily Slip Dress pattern for a while, but put off making it as I never thought I'd have an occasion to wear it. However, I'm determined to start wearing dresses more frequently during the summer. I also thought it would be a good addition to my collection of formal wear, other recent additions to which include this jumpsuit and this black dress.

The cowl neck is obviously the main feature of this pattern, and one which I've seen more and more of in RTW recently. It's one of those designs that I had no interest in ever wearing a few years ago but have started to really like - probably a subconscious reaction to seeing more of it! I wasn't sure how the cowl neck would come together before I made this dress, and just assumed that the the fabric would be hemmed across the top. This pattern is much more clever than that! The fabric is doubled over to form the cowl neck, meaning that it hangs perfectly and the wrong side doesn't show at all.

This is the first garment that I've made which has been cut on the bias, and it's definitely a feature of the dress that I love. The drape is so pretty, especially in the skirt which isn't actually that wide but has a satisfying 'swish' all the same. I did leave the dress to hang for a few days on my mannequin before hemming it, but didn't actually find that the hem was uneven after that time.

This dress has so many pretty and delicate features, and I really took my time over the finish. I used this trick to turn the straps the right way, which worked perfectly in such a fine fabric. The armhole is also edgestiched at the side seams are sewn with a French seam, so there are lots of careful touches that make the dress feel professionally made.

With such a simple shape, the fabric has a large role to play in this dress and I'm very happy with the one I chose. As mentioned, I wanted to make something just for the fun of sewing, and that included purchasing both new fabric and a new pattern for this project. I am really not a fan of PDFs but like this pattern so much that I chose to make it anyway, and once again used this printing service to avoid sticking together pieces of paper. The fabric that I chose is a floral rayon, very lightweight which is a must for the drape and the neckline. 

Considering how put together this dress feels, I was quite surprised at how quick it was to make. It only actually has three pattern pieces - the front and back bodices, and the back facing. This was definitely the kind of sewing project that I needed, and I'm so happy with how it turned out. I'll definitely be making this pattern again, and might hack it into a top version too. The only thing I'll possibly change is to make it ever so slightly longer - I'm not particularly tall but the dress finishes just below the knee on me, rather than the midi length I was expecting.

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