Probable failure: Vogue 1268

Not every sewing project works out well. Here is a recent failure: Vogue 1268 in green fake suede fabric. You might be thinking it’s pretty strange to make a long-sleeved, lined, polyester dress in summer and you’d be right. Not all stash-busting is a good idea. And that was only the first mistake.

V1268 is a Guy Laroche designer pattern that came out a few years ago. The envelope photo is below. It’s got an unusually baggy top half, and all the reviews of the pattern that I’ve found mention that the bodice runs very long. After reading the reviews I checked the back length on the pattern tissue. It has a handy marking to show how much blousing there’s meant to be, and it’s a very generous amount. If you remove the blousing allowance then the back length matches the Vogue measurement chart, to which I’d normally add 5cm, but given the reviewers’ comments I left the bodice length alone and added about 5cm to the skirt length instead. I also added side seam pockets, hem facings, and tweaked the lining pattern so I could do a bagged lining with the skirt lining completely attached to the hem and front facings. The original dress has a raw hem on the shell fabric and the lining is hemmed separately and attached to the dress at the front facings and waist seam. 

Here’s the back view. I didn’t do a good job on pressing the hem but let’s ignore that for now. There’s a bit of pulling at the back hip which I notice is present on Vogue’s model too. The waist is close-fitting. I made my usual size (for Vogue this is one size down from what the size chart indicates) and while it’s not uncomfortable there isn’t a lot of expansion room at the waist. I probably should have traced a size bigger. This seems to be happening more and more with Vogue for me despite checking the finished garment measurements before cutting. But overall the back isn’t bad.

But now look at it from the side. The right bodice front is much too long and sags unattractively over the waist seam. There is no sign of this in the pattern photo, but the model’s shoulders are amazingly square. Could there be shoulder pads in there? I could swear the pattern doesn’t mention them. It might explain why the sleeves are a bit longer on me than the model too.

I thought about trying to take up the extra length at the waist seam but the slanting shape of the right skirt front means this involves losing width in the wrap, and I really don’t like wrap dresses with a skimpy overlap. I finished the dress in the hope that it would be wearable in the end despite the bodice, but I’m pretty dubious now I’ve tried it on.
On the good side: my bagged lining worked perfectly. Behold the entirely machine-finished hem/facing/lining junction! And just ignore the lack of pressing.

There are other good things about this make. The sleeves went in easily, which was good because the fake suede does not like to be eased, and they are comfortable to wear with a good range of motion. I like the cuffs too. In fact if I’d shortened the bodice front on the pattern in advance I think I’d be really pleased with the result. 

I’m going to hang onto the dress until the autumn as I don’t think I’ll know how truly wearable it is until cold weather comes along. My hopes are not high but perhaps the magic wardrobe will transform it in the next few months.

39 thoughts on “Probable failure: Vogue 1268

  1. So promising, so….yes, I’m with you on this one. I hope you can work out a save though, the colour and shape are so good on you. Maybe some creative darting along that right front edge to suck up the excess fabric?

    1. That’s a thought, thanks. I am going to give it a bit of a break before attempting any fixes though; it’s way too hot to be trying this dress on!

      1. Yes, I was going to suggest a dart too. In fact, you could try multiple parallel darts in that side similar to an old Armani design I saw show up on Shams’ Instagram recently? Then instead of looking like a fix, it would be a true design feature.

  2. It’s a really cool dress but it needs a little bit more detail. Perhaps something at the skirt wrap closure like the dress in the picture would be good? I think some proper pressing and some top stitching would make it look better as well.Also just a snap closure right at the top of the bodice crossover point would keep it from drooping below the waist. I’d love to see “after” pictures!

    1. Thanks! I did really want something at the waist but despite hours of internet searches I couldn’t find anything suitable that didn’t cost an arm and a leg. Still, something may turn up.

  3. Love the neat lining finish! Could it be worth shortening from the shoulders? Maybe y
    taking out the sleeves, pulling up at the shoulders and re-cutting the armhole?it’s so close to being great that it might be worth the extra time.

    1. Thanks! I don’t think I could stand to reset the sleeves, but as the problem’s at the neckline end of the shoulder seam it might be possible without…or am I just being very slapdash 🙂

  4. it’s too bad. I love the shape (and the color) and the lines on the skirt. the problems mostly seem to be in the top — would it be possible to repurpose just the skirt somehow?

  5. I second the skirt suggestion. I love the way the overlap hangs! It would be fantastic in the colder months 🙂

  6. I think it’s really cool and would look great in wintertime. The fit is good other than the front overlap of the bodice which is slightly too long. I would take about the waist seam in the front and shorten that piece and then reattach. But I don’t mind doing after the fact alterations – most people avoid them i guess….

    1. Thanks. I hate alterations but they’re normally worth the time so I should do them more often. I might feel more like altering this one when the weather cools down so I’m definitely hanging onto it.

  7. I agree with Beth -just shortening that overlap piece would make it perfect. There is something so stylish and just COOL about this dress on you especially worn casually with a silk cami underneath. Like a jacket/skirt all in one!

  8. oh my. Well, I’m sure the back of the model is all straight pins! I had this pattern as well, and finally decided to lose it because I’d have so little reason to wear it in my ‘quiet’ life. I do like the color on you, beautiful fabric.

    1. Thanks…I admit I am starting to have suspicions about Photoshop with respect to this pattern. But then I think I’ve read that Vogue show the designer original on the envelope but the pattern isn’t always the designer’s original pattern, which might explain this one without any need for digital trickery.

  9. I think shoulder pads are definitely there on the model. Maybe try those first – they could change your mind about how to move forward and doing so would take just a few minutes. I haven’t met many Vogue patterns that don’t have them, either explicitly or implicitly. Seems to me shoulder pads go a long way toward maintains the drama Vogue is famous for.

  10. I’m going to add my two cents even though I’m guessing that in this moment you must just feel done with this garment. Yes, I’ve been there. Recently.

    First of all, I can’t stop myself from scrolling back and looking at the photo on the pattern envelope. The shoulders are indeed very square and wide. And the sleeves are 3/4 or 7/8 at best.

    Faux suede isn’t that easy to work with and you really did make good work with those set in sleeves and your bagged lining! The colour is pretty fabulous on you too! I’m wondering if you might consider wearing this as a duster….maybe over skinny jeans and the tank you have on. Then if might just be a matter of adding one or two pleats on the front? If not that, maybe a really wide obi style belt will do the trick.

    Best of luck and thanks for sharing!

  11. I totally understand the feeling of frustration… I feel like most of the clothes I made earlier this year are getting no love during the summer months. The lining looks fab, and the color is great. Hopefully time away will let you rethink this and come up with a solution for the bits you are less pleased with.

  12. greetings, love the craft, beautiful work! i have this pattern also, and if i may offer my observations? there must be some excess bodice to achieve the ‘pouf’ immediately above waist cinch and the pattern model bodice may be invisibly fastened in some manner. regardless, when i compare the pattern model to your lovely version, i see a pattern dress fastening at the side seam. regardless of pattern instruction, if it were me, i would move the closure much closer to the side seam, losing the inseam pockets to create the required ease. this should cause greater overlap in bodice and move the skirt drop to the most flattering location (although you’re lucky because any position would be flattering on you). thank you for sharing your lovely post! best of luck!

  13. You are you own harshest critic. I loved this on the envelop and envisaged it in real suede. You have put me off a bit as I am much shorter than you. I am not sure I like the uneven hem (despite the bagging out being beautiful). But the alteration Beth suggests is the one I would try and I don’t think it would be an inordinate amount of work. And I also agree that you should put it away until its cooler. It is impossible to think when you feel clammy and closed in.

  14. Something has been done to the shoulders on the model for sure. I recently made something with a similar type of bloused top overlapped (it was a Burda mag pattern). It didn’t hang right on me, there was a similar problem with the front bodice overlap doing its own thing. I agree that the colour, and the general relaxed style of this is right for you, perhaps a bit of darting and/or shoulder pads will sort that front bodice slouch. I look forward to reading about what you come up with when the weather cools.

  15. Wow, that really stinks. It’s a great color on you. I hope a little time in the wardrobe does it some good since it may be worth saving. If all else fails, could it be transformed into separates?

  16. There’s so much potential in this design and the concept suits you – but it’s drafted with a bit too much length in the front diagonal seams. I think it’s fixable by taking out a wedge at the front waist. Ideally on the pattern the excess would be taken out in several small slivers, like darts pointing inward taking some of the design ease out of crossover edge of both fronts so it sits right but leaves the right amount of droop.

  17. Oh no! but honestly I think you’re being hard on yourself and it’s not quite the fail you think… that fabric is totally beautiful and so well worth saving somehow. I reckon with that right front shortened at the waist seam the gaping would be fixed substantially. Also the last picture with those little brown boots instantly made me think of Link, which is a pretty good thing 🙂

  18. I agree there were definitely shoulder pads in the pattern photo dress. I also wonder if there wasn’t a pin or snap where the bodice meets in center front. Or else some careful garment adjusting followed by orders to the model to not move, don’t even breathe, until the shot was gotten. Maybe it’s the fabric, but this seems like one of those patterns where you’d need to go down a size, maybe 2?, in the bodice to get the same look as the photo. Even the shoulder seams on the model are not off her shoulders as they are on you, I don’t think shoulder pads would affect that, unless the pads extended past her shoulder, would they?

    The dress is definitely “you” though, especially with those boots. It’s a pity the fit is off.

    1. Thanks! You’re right, I probably wanted the smallest size for length and my regular one for width in this one. It fits the model so very differently than it does me.

  19. Definitely one to put away for a while and come back. It’s sad you are uncertain about it.
    Might a well placed brooch (modern – not your grannies) improve the droop – and I agree an obi is worth a try. Maybe with a cooler day, a good pressing, and a load of props to try you will be able to make it work for you. I hope so because it has real potential 🙂

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