The chain of stores I work for has a pretty sweet deal going on: employees have a monthly budget to use on accessories to wear while they're working. The particular location I work at doesn't sell any accessories, so I can use that budget on fabric! I had taken this black lace home in November, but since the heating wasn't working all winter it didn't make sense to use it then (since it would have been covered in sweaters anyway). Recently my boss reminded me that I still had it, so I set out to make a nice spring/summer outfit! In black lace.
I wanted to play with transparency a bit, and flipped through the Burda catalog to see if I found anything inspiring. Burda 6438 had an interesting bodice going on, with raglan sleeves and curved inset pieces that reminded me of the Colette Rue (which is a dress that I like in theory but read so many horror stories about I'm not even going to bother trying to make it work). The pattern comes with a straight skirt which isn't at all my jam, so I added a circle skirt instead.
The entire dress is underlined in a thin cotton, apart from the sleeves. Initially I wanted to leave the side panels transparent as well (as shown in one of the views of this pattern) but after trying the dress on before adding the lining it just looked... weird. Maybe it's because the detail doesn't continue on the back, or because my bra band would always be visible, or maybe because I'm just not used to drawing attention to that part of me. After some laughing at myself in the mirror I just added the side panels to the lining and solved that issue.
I didn't make a muslin because Burda patterns tend to fit me really well, and just cut my size based on my waist measurement. According to their size chart I'm a 40 in the bust and 38 everywhere else, but I find that a straight 38 usually fits fine in the bust department. I usualle do have to remove some width from the back, which is a common alteration for me!
An invisible zipper would break instantly with this bulky lace/underlining combination, so I used a regular one and hand picked it. I think this finish is somewhere between an invisible and a topstitched lapped zipper in terms of niceness. Also, hand sewing is relaxing. Deal with it.
I don't think anyone would associate this dress with summer, but that's definitely not going to stop me from wearing it! And in winter as well, of course. I think our heating has been fixed by now.
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