…That’s not *exactly* what I said when this happened, but the exasperation is the same. I put her together, realized that stretch poplin fits differently than a regular woven, adjusted, tweaked, trimmed, pressed, and unpicked tiny seams to to re-sew them 1/16″ smaller/wider so every band of raspberry matches at each seam. I like twiddly, fiddly, pretty projects. Unpicking doesn’t usually get me down because I look at it as taking a baby step closer to “perfection.” I unpicked one side of the zipper several times to be sure the bands matched up. Just as I said to myself “Stephanie, this is a good day’s work,” zip, zip split happened.
I’m not one to let a dress push me over the edge, and besides I like this dress. She’s crumpled because after the split I kicked her into a pile in the corner of my sewing room, where she stayed until I rescued her this morning for photos. I know that means I have to replace the zipper and press her carefully everywhere, but she would have needed a final press anyway.
She fits really well and I’m glad I went with a knee-length half-circle skirt. I think the bands are wider than Megan’s dress but I’m not too bothered because I like this dress and actually think I’ll get some good wear from her. The dress has very little ease but because the fabric has some give it’s quite comfortable- like a second skin. I might have to experiment more with making dresses from this kind of fabric. It’s very pleasant to work with and wear. Two layers of this lightweight stretch cotton poplin is a perfect dress weight.
Yesterday, Puu asked me how approaching the inset bands as a quilter rather than a dressmaker makes the difference. Part of it is the seam allowance. Part of it is the expectations involved. That is, I have yet to meet a quilter (someone with a few quilts under her belt) who is *not* a perfectionist in her sewing. In quilting more than in dressmaking, mistakes multiply.
Seams must match up, points are sharp, seams pressed crisply and carefully and no easing. The “no easing” is a key difference- quilts are flat, dresses are shaped. It’s just as tricky to convince little pieces of fabric to sew together flat as it is to coax a piece of flat fabric into the shape of a woman, but the sewing is quite different.
So each of these contrast insets are flat. I think it would be asking for trouble to make shaped insets, though I did consider it (more seams, more fitting opportunities!). I also figured out how to sew the pieces together in what seemed to me a logical way- the way a quilter would put them together.
Sigh. Today I’ll pick up a zipper while I’m out anyway. Once it’s replaced we’re in business!