As you can see, I made View B. And in red, no less.
This really is a very easy pattern. There are just 6 pattern pieces and they go together perfectly. The dress is a simple, shoulder seam princess dress with or without sleeves. The gathered sides are what make the design and they are very easy to sew. A beginner could handle this pattern easily.
I used red ponte knit from Hancock Fabrics to make this dress. It sewed up beautifully with no problems. Here's a little close-up of the side gathers. Sorry about the shadow- my photographer is only 11!
I cut a 14 through the shoulders, a 16 from bust to hip, and an 18 from hip to hem. The vertical princess seams make it very easy to grade from size to size for a custom fit. In the end, I ended up taking the skirt in about a half size from the hips down. so I guess you could say it's a size 17 on the bottom.
I made a lot of fitting adjustments, mostly in the area of length. I began with a 3/8" petite adjustment above the bust. I also did a 1/2" princess FBA to give me a little extra length right over the fullest part of the bust. I then added 1 3/8" of extra length at the waist- all standard adjustments for me.
Thank goodness I thought to check the sleeve circumference before cutting. The sleeves are drafted rather narrow. I ended up adding 1 1/4" at the fullest part of the bicep. I could have added a smidge more, but I think they're okay.
I also shortened the sleeves by about 2 1/2." I admit I got a little crazy. I should have stopped at 1 1/2." As it is the sleeves are slightly short on me, but it's alright because I always push my sleeves up, so no one will ever really know.
There's one other adjustment I had to make that stemmed from a mistake. The dress is supposed to have a slit at the center back with a hook and eye to close the neckline. I was happily sewing along with my mind on other things when I realized I had basted the CB seam and completely serged it... without leaving the slit!
At that point it was too late to try to pick it out and correct it. So I left the CB seam and I trimmed the neckline seam allowance back by about 1/2." I added a self fabric band by cutting a strip on the cross grain and folding it in half lengthwise. I made sure the band was slightly shorter than the neckline and I eased it onto the dress. Once it was sewn on, I pressed it away from the dress and topstitched about 1/16" away from the seam to hold the seam allowance down inside. No one will ever know that it wasn't supposed to be that way all along. (And yes, it fits over my head just fine!)
This pattern seems to be drafted rather short. Even after adding over an inch to the length, I still had barely enough fabric to turn up a 1" hem and keep the finished hemline right at mid to high knee level. If I made it again, I would add a little bit extra for insurance. I suppose it's okay, though, to show a little bit of knee since the bodice is so covered up.
I quite like this dress. The princess seams are flattering and easy to adjust and sew. The side gathers are also easy to sew, but add a lot of drama to what is really a very simple dress. And of course it's a knit dress, so it's comfortable and easy to wear.
When I bought this fabric and chose this pattern from my stash three weeks ago, I had no idea this would be such a popular garment. I've seen at least four of these around the web in the last couple of weeks. It's kind of strange that an OOP pattern would be so popular all of a sudden. But I suppose that just goes to show what a great pattern it is.
I could see myself making this again. The sleeveless version would be good to have for summer in a bright fabric. It would be easy to add a short sleeve or even just a little cap sleeve as well. You could also easily scoop out the neckline to give it a different look. I even saw a color blocked version on Pattern Review the other day. If you have this pattern in your stash, take it out and give it a go.