“Muffy, you killed him!” Or, the Bloody Garden Party Dress

I grabbed the fabric for this dress at the $2.50 per pound shop, mostly because I loved the swathes of red. It’s basically all pastel and springy…and then you killed somebody. Yes, I know that dried blood isn’t bright red but rather burgundy or brown — I watch enough crime dramas, for pete’s sake — but NEVER MIND THAT. I just like the idea of Muffy finishing off the butler in the conservatory while wearing this dress.

I dumped the knife and plastic gloves in the planter.

I used New Look 6457, View E, because I wanted a very traditional party dress silhouette. The only change I made was leaving off the piping detail. I do not have much of a waist, though, so I sewed a size 10 but tapered my bodice seams to 1/2″ at the sides and back. It’s still a smidgen tighter than I prefer so if I make this again, I would probably need to do the same adjustment at the back and front darts as well. I also sewed the waist seam at 3/8″ to allow for my long waist. However, I’ve mentioned before and I will say again that this is not the best silhouette for the small-of-boob, so I am unlikely to sew it twice. You can see the gap at the neckline that I complained about earlier in this photo, but it’s much less prominent if I’m standing straight:

If I stand with both of my hands at my side, the gaping at the neckline disappears. I'm calling it good.

I had trouble with the lining and as a consequence, I lined the bodice but not the skirt. That’s what I get for following directions too literally. I know what I did wrong and will fix it in future dresses, but I did end up going out today to buy a white slip. What the heck, I need one anyway and they’re inexpensive. The red belt I bought way back when at Target, because I wanted a red belt for an outfit that never happened. Then while working on the dress last week, I had to take the offspring to be shod and what did I spy on the clearance rack? These perfectly fitting sandals for $15! They go with my pirate dress too. I am podiatrically challenged so if I find shoes that fit, it’s a freaking miracle. If they don’t hurt my feet and are in a color I like, I buy them immediately and offer up a burnt offering to the Shoe Fairy.

For those of you who enjoy pictures of my backside:

There ya go. Holy crap, that debutante slump is appalling. Someone should tell me to stand up straight.

I put in an invisible zipper, and it’s ACTUALLY INVISIBLE. *dies of shock* I put it in with a combination of a regular presser foot and regular zipper foot, too. I was so happy to get a match at the waist that I’m trying not to notice the eighth of an inch or so where the top of the dress doesn’t line up perfectly. Repeat after me, perfect is the enemy of good…perfect is the enemy of good…

Now that I’m ready for any random fetes, murderous or not, I’m also making progress on my other projects. I made it to the gym this morning, ate no sugar or bad carbs all day, fitted and pinned a skirt hem, and the kids are downstairs watching The Finder on DVR. Which I’m choosing to believe is teaching them to respect diversity, work with their strengths and avoid parole officers. All good lessons. So I had a White Russian to celebrate….ok, ok, ALMOST no sugar or bad carbs. Perfect is the enemy of good, remember?


Posted on April 17, 2012, in my weird sense of humor, sewing. Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. It looks great, equally suited to murderous garden parties and child-wrangling (just remind them you might need to, ah, refresh the colouring of your dress…) ;).

    Love the sandals—and now I need a red belt. 🙂

  2. Hey this is cute and I like the murderous red, though the shoes are of course perfect, because they fit and are cute…. Comfy shoes don’t come about very often in my world either.

    Qudos for the zip, and I wouldn’t have noticed the slight difference at the top if you hadn’t mentioned it.

    Have you booked the caterers??

  3. Zips are the bane of my life…….as for gappy necks – I am somewhat blessed in the boob department and I still get them – in my case I think the shoulders need taking up an inch….

    • If you are built like my BFF, you might have a short torso as well as a large bust. She always has to take up the straps on spaghetti strap dresses — that’s one way to know if your bustline is high. Also, if you have sloping shoulders then that could be a gaposis issue as well, and changing the pattern to slope down a bit more usually fixes that.

      • Er yep, that’ll be both then lol – years of weight training mean big traps and upper back…damn being short lol…at least it means my boobs aren’t sagging too much…yet

  4. I think it looks perfect on you! Only you will notice any flaws. Have you thought of maybe wearing a padded bra? Would that help with the gapping?

    And the shoes are marvelous! Cheap shoes that fit and match? Hallelujah, praise the shoe gods.

    So, when is the garden party? I will need to clear my calendar for this. You are gonna make me a dress for it as well, right? Right??

    • A padded bra would almost definitely help. I kinda need a new one anyway, the kind that has removable straps for strapless gowns, but I HATE underwires and tight elastic….

      How about you help me shop for a bra and I will totally make you a dress? That seems fair….

  5. LOVE IT! You need to start Zazzling these pieces!

  6. Man, I seriously love that print. And I’m so jealous of your ability to make stuff that you can actually wear. I can manage costumey stuff that I can wear for a day, but that’s about it.

  7. Now that I think of it, B1547 does that to me, I had to take a pinch out at the neck.

    I do love the dress. It’s wonderfuly feminine without being too girly. The belt is a great addition, pulls out the red and gives you some waist deinition. And the shoes… love strappy shoes like that. Total win of an outfit.

    Yay for the gym and good food! Alcohol doesn’t count, you were just getting your calcium.

  8. That is awesome, extra points for the matching shoes. The neckline gaping can probably be fixed with a tiny little dart in the pattern paper (if its small enough it shouldn’t affect anything else too much. If not you might actually have to do some real ‘fitting’ and modification XP).

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