Work in progress – if progress is the word.

One of my first projects when I got my sewing machine back in November, was the immensely popular Coffee Date dress. It’s a pattern from The Selfish Seamstress, available at BurdaStyle (here) for free. Let me repeat that. For free. It’s a basic dress with a bit of frill, just how I like it. I fearlessly got to work, cursing merrily as I tend to do in the face of a challenge, and plowed on. The final result was actually not terrible.

Coffee Date dress - first attempt

Coffee Date dress – first attempt

Not terrible, but also not wearable. I’m a perfectionist. The ruffle was a problem: I attached it in the wrong place and it puckered the bodice. I got lazy towards the end and couldn’t be bothered with tacking down the facings. I inserted the zipper unevenly. The waist band is one centimeter shorter on the left side than on the right. Suffice it to say that, proud as I was of myself for finishing it, this was not a dress I was about to wear for a coffee date.

I also had some sizing issues. The dress is just a bit too tight at the bust, and more than a bit too loose at the waist – that’s what I get for having an hourglass figure. What’s worse is that my waist was actually a few centimeters lower than the waist of the dress, making my upper body look boxy… which it most definitely is not.

So that was that for my Coffee Date dress initiation. I knew I would have to try again at some point, though, and kept the pattern close at hand. Last week I suddenly felt overcome with springiness and decided to take the leap again. This certainly helped muster my courage:

Candy colours!

Candy colours!

This time, I’m going to try a fully lined version, without the ruffle but with piping at the waist. I have altered the pattern to make some room for my shoulders – trusting that my shoulders were the issue, not my average-sized bust. I have redrafted the back completely and elongated the bodice to fall to my actual waist. I have made three muslins and only stopped because I have no scraps left to make another. That’s enough procrastinating… Now for the real thing.

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