Sunday, 1 May 2011

The Back and Forth dress

 It feels like I started this dress ages ago! At first I had a clear vision of what I was making. I would make the Simplicity 4491 with the wider skirt and that would be it. And I did, until it was time to hem the dress. Then I started second guessing my choice and started thinking of tearing the skirt down and making the wiggle view instead. In the end I went back and forth with the decision for weeks (hence the name) and finally went with the original idea. Isn't that always the case by the way? lol! I did take some construction photos when I worked with the bodice part but forgot to take any with the skirt part. I underlined the bodice with white cotton and did the skirt lining with the same cotton. The flower fabric is a polyester cotton blend sheet I thrifted for 2 euros from the Salvation Army and the white cotton is and old sheet I got from my mother. The only new thing I had to buy was the zipper, so in the end the dress cost about 4 euros, not bad!

I did the underlining my own way; pinned the two layers togethet and staystiched the edges.

The sheet had a tag that said the fabric was ironing free. It wasn't but still it's pretty!
The darts were worryingly pointy at this point.

I trimmed the darts and finished them with hand overcast.

Sewing the neckline facings. I added interfacing to all the facing pieces to stabilize them properly.

I didn't make any alterations to the bodice piece since I had done it once already. With the skirt part I had to make do of what I had. There wasn't enough fabric to make the skirt as wide as the pattern required. I ended up not using the skirt pattern pieces at all. I just took as big a piece of the fabric as I could and made a one-piece dirndl skirt. I did to the pleats in the front according to the pattern, but that was easily done even without the pattern pieces. I handpicked the backzipper, all 50 cm of it! And twice! I also added a waiststay to secure the skirt.


The hat is a must on the 1st of May, but so uncomfy on!

Here's a peak of the 1st of May celebration in the 1940s:


Sain vihdoin valmiiksi mekon, joka on lojunut keskeneräisenä viikkokausia. Nyt se on kuitenkin valmis ja istuu kuin unelma!


  1. I love that fabric--what a cute dress!

  2. It's lovely, really pretty and a great fit. x