My first attempt at the Colette Peony ended up in the scrap fabric box. The darts were so wrong for me in so many ways that I was left with a bunch of extra fabric in the middle of my chest. I can’t even describe how awful it looked. I would put it back on and take a picture so you could see, but I really don’t want to relive that experience. It was only my second sewing project and I had never even heard the word “muslin” before. I was super bummed, because it looked so cute on the model and I really wanted one for myself. I was even more disappointed when one of my sewing friends made one and it fit her perfectly. I don’t accept failure easily, so I decided to sign up for an advanced sewing class at my local fabric shop, 5/8th Seams, that focuses on fit and pattern alterations. Glad I didn’t give up, because look at what I ended up with! A beautiful Peony!
We of course started with a muslin so the instructor could see all the issues I was having with the fit of the bodice. From there we cut the bodice down to a 0 and graded out to a 4 at the waist. I looked like I was being choked so we took a ½ or so off the front center neckline. The darts took a couple of tries to get perfect, but in the end we got it.
As you all know from my Colette Laurel post, I love this neckline!!! I think I’m going to make a blouse this weekend and use this neckline for it. I just can’t get enough of it!
The voile fabric I chose was on the sheer side, so she taught me how to line the dress. The lining finishes the neckline and the sleeves. She also had me put some interfacing along the neckline of the lining.
The voile fabric is by Anna Maria Horner and is called Turn of Events in Indigo. You can find it at Hawthorne Threads, but they only have 1 1/8 yard left and it’s on sale. I purchased mine from 5/8th Seams, but this fabric was popular and has been long gone. This is one of my favorite voiles. I had some left over from this project so I used it to make a simple skirt with a black knit waistband. I’ll have to share this skirt with you too. It’s so comfortable!
This is a great work dress for me. I can throw a cardigan on with it and the sleeves aren’t too bulky underneath. It’s so cold where I work that being able to wear a cardigan with something I’ve made is a major plus. I will often make my dresses sleeveless, because I know I will get more use out of it if I can wear it to work with a cardigan.
Piper thought it was super exciting to explore this hidden little alley.