When the Peony dress was first released by Colette patterns, it seemed to pass me by for some reason. I was only swayed into buying it because of all the delectable versions that kept popping up on sewing blogs. But I'm SO glad I did - I can see myself making this perfect little dress over and over again. I love the classic lines, the neat fit and the fact that it has a vintage 1960's vibe whilst still looking modern. So without further ado, let me present my version: the Rosy Peony.
It's made from a textured, almost waffley cotton fabric (I'd be interested to learn the official name for this type of fabric if anybody knows). The fabric is relatively thick, but also soft, which was important as I didn't want to end up with pointy darts as forewarned by Karen in this invaluable post. Taking Karen's advice, I made a muslin of the bodice and by some miracle, didn't need to make any adjustments to the front. The back was a different matter though and I encountered my usual problems of busty front versus narrow back. The changes were still only minimal: I increased the top/shoulder darts and made a tuck across the back. I was sporting quite a smug look on my face at this stage, which was soon wiped off once I'd sewn the bodice up in my fashion fabric. Yes, I encountered the old chestnut of different fabrics behaving in different ways, grrr. I used a plain woven cotton for my muslin and failed to take note that the waffley fabric actually had quite a bit of stretch to it. You've guessed it, the fit was now too big, doh! The overall shape was good though so it was quite easily rectified by simply taking in the side seams from just below the bust dart.
Apart from the fitting of the bodice, the pattern was the usual delight to sew up and only took a couple of hours to make. I added black piping to the neckline, (gifted to me by Zoe and Claire when I couldn't make the Brighton De-Stash meet up, thanks ladies!) This was my first time working with piping and I couldn't believe how easy it was! It seemed to work like magic, I'll be piping everything that moves from now on.
|Admire my piping|
|...and my overlocking - couldn't resist a gratuitous inside shot|
I also didn't bother with the cummerbund belt - if I need a belt, I'll add this little number instead.
I've got a party to go to in a few week's time and I know this dress will be perfect. I think it will also be good to wear with sandals and a cardigan in spring, so I'll definitely be making another version before the year is out. I think the Year of the Dress has got off to a good start. x