Saturday, July 9, 2016

McCall's 6696 Shirtdress Sew Along Part 3

I have been having so much fun with this shirtdress sew along that I had to keep going.  This is McCall's 6696, a very popular pattern right now.  There are quite a few of them in the sew along and even more if you do an image search online.  The cool thing about this pattern is that pretty much every single one you find looks great on the wearer, no matter which view they made or what fabric they used.  I challenge you- go take a look!

I had to get in on the fun, so I picked this pattern up a few weeks ago when JoAnn's had it on sale.  I love that it has a waist band with tiny belt loops, and a button band.  And pockets- love the pockets!  The pattern includes sleeve variations and two skirt options, as well as a slip if you want to make your shirtdress out of sheer or semi-sheer fabric.
 You can't see the back unless you look at the line drawings, but this pattern also has a back bodice yoke, which I love, and the back is gathered to the yoke and the waist band for some pretty, feminine detailing.

My dress is made up in a flamingo print cotton from Hobby Lobby.  It's been really hot here lately and muggy, too.  I saw this fabric and instantly decided that a crisp white cotton shirtdress would be a great thing to have for the summer.  That it's covered in pink flamingos is just icing on the shirtdress cake.  I tried to punch up the wow factor just a teeny tiny bit by using buttons with rhinestones.  You can just see them in the photo below.

Oops!  I missed a button!  I think I need to go ahead and add a button above the one at the bust line and another to the collar stand.  I will have to go back to the store and get more first.

I did not make a muslin, but cut my standard 14 shoulder, 16 everywhere else, which would have been great except that I decided to use the pattern piece for the C-cup bust.  I should have just used the A/B-cup piece or the 14 with the c-cup.  My bodice turned out a little too big through the bust.  It's time to reassess my size requirements (and start making proper muslins again!)  I also forgot to make a sway back adjustment and my back bodice is a little too long and poofy.

The pattern is drafted well and everything went together fine.  I ran into some issues with my pleats on the skirt front, but I'm pretty sure it was user error.  I ended up with one pleat narrower than the rest and the ones closest to CF are off, but no one will know but me.  (And you.)  The pattern calls for purchased binding for the armholes.  I didn't have a suitable color in stash so I made my own using pink gingham.  I should have gotten a photo because it looks really nice inside.  I also added a hook to the inside of the button band at the waist to prevent any gaping.

This project seemed to take a very long time.  My first two shirt dresses seemed to go right together, but this one dragged during construction.  There were extra steps and more pieces- the waistband, button band, and the collar with stand.  I also fell a little out of love with it during the process and then trying it on and realizing the bodice is too big didn't help.  But seeing the pictures, I'm starting to feel warm and fuzzy toward it again.

I just might make this again, with some changes:  smaller bodice, sway back adjustment, higher armhole (or maybe a short sleeve.)  It really is a great pattern.  Just ask any of the many others who have made it and look great in it!

I may take a break from shirt dresses for a little while.  I'm helping the Princess with her 4H sewing project this weekend and I have a couple of Burda patterns that are whispering to me.  But I still have a couple of shirtdress patterns that are speaking to me and I would really like to make another M5024 in a fabulous print.  We'll have to see what happens