Monday, May 30, 2011

My Sunshine Dress Failure

Have you ever sewn a project where, if something could go wrong, then it did go wrong? It seems while working on this dress, which I had dubbed the sunshine dress, the universe turned against me. The fabric was a loosely woven vintage linen (it was just 36" wide) and it frayed if you even gave it a mean, sideways glance. The floor under the sewing table looks like I spilled the contents of an industrial size shredder because of all the fray pieces. I zigzagged all of my seams but that didn't even really help the problem. Now, since I do love outlines with bullet points, I think I'll make one to let you see why this dress is the dress of doom.
  • The fabric frayed like mad.
  • I made the armholes a bit too small. 
  • The seam of the yokes and the shoulder seams don't line up. ( I think I may have gotten my front and back pieces mixed up.)
  • One of the darts in the bodices doesn't line up with it's corresponding skirt dart, even though the side seams line up. ( The next point may be the reason for this.)
  • I cut the skirt generously thinking it would be snug, but now it's too loose.
  • It's too long.
  • I missed one piece of the "lap" on the lapped zipper leaving a raw edge flapping about.
  • I stitched in the ditch on the yoke instead of slipstitching and missed about half of the facing.
  • My gathering on the hips is uneven. 
  • And, last but not least, I used a shoddy zipper which doesn't want to unzip without some serious coercing. 
See, I told you the universe turned against me while making this dress!

Even with all the terrible things that happened, and consequently, the loss of precious sewing time, I think I like this pattern. You see, the bodice fits quite well and I think that if I made this in a more stable, tightly woven fabric, then things would turn out just fine. So, the sunshine dress is now the sunshine muslin and I have intentions of making another one in some gray poplin. (The poplin was originally destined to be a pair of Anthro knockoff shorts, but they're going to have to wait.)

The pattern on the right is the one I used.
Please excuse my lack of makeup and the state of my hair.
 So, there you have it, my sunshine dress of doom. Hopefully my next rendition will be better, and actually wearable.

Have you, readers, ever had your own dress, or garment, of doom? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Happy Sewing!


  1. Yes, Rebecca, I was going to write about one in a post. When these things happen, we get discouraged, believe me, everyone who sews has a story of the dress of doom. I am currently working on a dress with some problems like you stated. Nothing is lining up, I finally gave up this afternoon and started a skirt instead. Good luck, Your doom dress looks pretty! I hope you make another one and it is a breeze to put together!

  2. Me? Make boo-boos after decades of sewing? Well, um, yes. I just finished a blouse from challis. I should have known that zigzagging the seam allowances would not be enough, but guess I didn't want to take the extra time to make an overlock stitch instead. So now I'm cutting threads every time I wear it.

    You don't sound discouraged and don't be. By your own words, some of the problems could have been avoided. Actually your dress looks pretty good in the photo.

  3. Thanks so much for the encouragement ladies! :]

  4. To many to name,I say it's just God's way of letting us know we're not perfect and it's okay.