The aggravation dress

I’ve decided to try to reproduce the Vivienne Westwood wrap dress rather than using one of the Burda patterns for my next project – thanks for all the suggestions!

But in the meantime I have managed to finish my last project, the hoodie dress. This one has been nothing but aggravation. It started badly with my shrinking my original fashion fabric in the washing machine. I replaced it with some lovely black ponte knit from John Lewis. The ponte is made of viscose and melts if you press it on too high a heat. You can guess what happened. Suffice to say that I didn’t intend the dress to be quite this short.



The interesting detail on this pattern is that as the zipper is at the back and the neckline is very high there also has to be a zipper in the hood so you can get it over your head. I decided to make a feature of this and do exposed zips rather than the invisible ones the pattern suggested. It took me three goes to get the back zipper in without it going wavy. I seem to have completely lost my touch with zips lately. And the less said about the finish at the ends of the zips, the better. I decided to bind the neckline seam rather than use facings, and made a total hash of it. I’m pleased to find that you can’t see it at all in the pictures. I really need to practice binding seams.



The hood is nice and big though, and I added inseam pockets, which I managed to place too low.





They can’t all be successes but at least it’s wearable!

14 thoughts on “The aggravation dress

  1. Good choice on the Vivienne Westwood dress – I’m making the September Burda pattern at the moment and it’s driving me nuts! šŸ™‚

  2. Wow! I love this; looks so funky and edgy. I adore the hoodie bit, and the exposed zipper is pure genius. It’s nice to see a black dress with an interesting feature to look at on the back … I call this a success!

  3. Well, you certainly rescued the fabric, even though it was almost not usable. I love this dress! The zipper detail on the back is really cool. And your tights & sneakers are perfect!

  4. It looks good. In fact, it is kind of a genius idea. I tend to run warm, so this would never work for me, though. I would have to make a sleeveless one and then wear it with a cardigan. I can covet from afar.

  5. This is pretty damn awsome – especially the exposed zipper that goes all the way up the hood. And you would never know that this dress is from a seventies pattern!

  6. Very cool dress, I love the exposed zipper detail continuing through the hood. Sorry you had a nightmare making it, but no one would ever know from the results.

  7. Cool dress Catherine !
    Re: copying the Vivienne Westwood wrap dress there’s 2 books that you might fancy to assist you in your quest:

    Patternmaking for a Perfect Fit it’s about copying RTW clothing. It’s got good reviews (see these posts by SunnyGal Studio and Sewing by the Seat of my Pants)
    TEXT

    Or, Patterns from Finished Clothes: Re-creating the Clothes You Love. Posts about this book: anothercreation blog, and here the same blogger compare 2 different copying methods.

  8. That last photo just has me cracking up. I feel like you deserve a weekend in Switzerland hiding out to recover from your sewing angst the way 19th century heroines used to take the Grand Tour to the Alps to get over a broken heart. But it looks great with those purple tights! One of these days, I’m going to devote an entire blog to individualized style and start with the CyberDaze Look!

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