I first noted Vogue 9021 when I was browsing for a cocktail dress with a twist. I looked up as many versions as I could find, to see if there was anything weird about the construction that I should know about. MimiG‘s version (in a knit) came up, as well as Adrienne‘s sophisticated number, Eryn‘s geometric dress (where she sewed up the armhole a bit), and Gabrielle‘s floral version (where she narrowed the dress a bit). I was warned about the armholes being so large that they would show some side bra.
I decided to go with one of the suggested fabrics, a polycotton broadcloth, for my first try. I chose a size 18, even though there would be 3 inches of ease at the bust, according to the tissue. I figured that part of the ease is for those fluttering sleeves, so I didn’t want to take away that feature.
The construction mostly makes sense, but the part about sewing the sleeve facing down tripped me up. The facing goes all the way down to the actual side of the bodice, and the way that the instructions ask you to sew it up makes for some awkward fabric bunching and a weirdly bulky join there. When I went to topstitch down the facing (’cause ain’t nobody got time for hand-sewing), it just made the situation more awkward. Here are some pictures.
The instructions say, “Turn facing to inside. Press. Sew outer edge in place.” The drawing of this step isn’t very clear about that join.
I tried on the pieces of the dress–the bodice and the skirt–separately as they were finished, but with no zipper. It did not bode well for the finished dress. I clipped the zipper area closed with Wonder Clips when I tried on the skirt, and I had some tightness over my lower belly, with puffiness below it. Does that indicate that I need a full tummy adjustment? Also, the bodice was rather capacious. My bosom was like two apples lost in a giant grocery bag. I hate not finishing things before starting something new, though, so I just didn’t sew for almost a week out of frustration.
I still haven’t joined the bodice and skirt because I’m still frustrated about the sleeve finishing situation.
Do you have any suggestions about what to do about the armhole/facing/bodice side seam situation? Also, I’ve promised myself that I am going to schedule an sewing class to focus entirely on fitting. I just want cute clothes that fit my curvy body!