Awhile ago I told you about the Perfect Pattern Parcel and how I thought it was awesome. If you do not recall, a quick recap. It was a collection of 5 indie patterns grouped together for sale, with some of the proceeds benefiting charity. Of the 5 patterns, the first one I made was the Lady Skater Dress, and I totally learned what all the fuss was about. I freaking love that dress and I wear it all the time. I just bought fabric to make another despite trying very very hard to sew down my fabric stash before we move. The Ava dress and top pattern by Victory Patterns was also included in the parcel and was sort of the catalyst that got me to buy. I wanted the Skater dress for sure, but having the Ava pattern bundled with it sort of sealed the deal.
This thing is one of the hardest things I've ever sewn. I don't know why; it's not THAT complicated. But it literally took me 6 weeks when I finish most sewing projects in about 2 days. I think I used just about every sewing machine foot I own. Zipper foot, edge stitch foot, regular foot, bias-tape-application foot (which I had to buy specifically to finish this dang shirt)... and probably more that I am now forgetting. Although- take a look at that bias binding! Looks good, eh? I was really pleased with the result of that bias tape foot.
(This is the inside. Look at that bias tape application!)
The floral fabric is something I bought in a Sacramento quilt shop in 2010. Yeah. I didn't buy enough to make a dress, and I thought it was too pretty to be a quilt, so I've been saving it for the right pattern for a long time. I actually think the fabric is too heavy for this pattern; it stands out A LOT at the hem. If I were to make it again I would definitely pick something with a lot more drape.
The sheer is something I've had in my stash for who knows how long, and let me tell you: it was a nightmare to work with. I literally balled it up and tossed it in the trash once, went to Joann's to find something else, found nothing, came home, and had to un-ball it up and figure out how to best make it work. Tons of pins and pattern weights/rotary cutter when cutting turned out to be the answer. But really, ugh. I frenched the shoulder seams and they are not that good. Hopefully no one looks too closely.
I didn't bother with print matching. Didn't have enough fabric. I did, however, trace all pattern pieces that said "cut on fold" to make them NOT cut on fold pieces, (explanation) which I think saves fabric and allows for better print placement. I did not want a great big flower over my bust. I made a straight size 8 and had a really good fit out of the envelope. The waist seam could be closer fitting, but there is a zipper there and I'm not taking it out to make the thing smaller. I will live with it.
One thing I had serious trouble with is the bias binding that was supposed to go around the sweetheart neckline. I could not understand the instructions, and there hasn't been a sew-along, so no photos online, so I abandoned that endeavor and did what I felt was right: I just sewed the sheer part to the floral part and top-stitched. Done!
Overall I like this top. It's definitely a nicer top, which I need more of. But it was a bit of pain to make, especially using sheer slippery fabric. It's pretty! That's for sure.