Here’s the inside story of my Mad Men Challenge dress.
The main fabric is a cotton/poly sateen. I like it because it doesn’t wrinkle very badly. But pressing was a pain! To help minimize shine and the darts/seam allowances leaving imprints on the front, I used a silk organza press cloth and card stock.
If you don’t have a silk organza press cloth – get one, seriously! It’s so great to be able to to see through the cloth when pressing. (I bought a yard of silk organza, and cut myself a square from that.)
I learned the card stock trick in tailoring class. If you sandwich strips of paper between your seam allowance/darts and main fabric, it prevents them from marking through on the front. It’s fiddly to do at first, but gets easier with practice.
Anyway, enough about pressing . . . back to the dress . . .
One of my favorite details on this dress are the front pleats. I was worried my fabric would be too heavy and stiff for them. But a trip through the washer and dryer fixed that. The heat from the dryer made the poly all soft and drapey.
And check out edges of the facings and the waist seam – they match up almost perfectly! This is probably the best I’ve done yet! Ya, I know, I probably get too excited about these things that no one sees. 🙂
I did another handpicked lapped zip. (If you haven’t tried this yet, go watch Sunni’s free zipper tutorial on Craftsy. It’s great! She shows how to do a lapped zip on the machine, but you can easily adapt her method to do it by hand. Instead of top stitching down the outside with your machine – hand sew that part with pick stitches.)
I’ve struggled to find the best way to finish the top of the zipper and the facing. I messed with this for a long time, and while it could be less bulky, I think it hides the tab pretty well.
The pattern has a slit in the back. Normally I would have changed it to a kick pleat, but decided to give the slit a try. It turned out okay, but I like kick pleats better.
On the hem, I tried something new. The sateen puckered really bad when I tried to hem it by catching just a thread of fabric on the back side. So I fused some weft interfacing along the hem line, and caught that instead of the fabric. It solved the puckering problem. Hopefully the fusing will hold up in the wash.
So there you have it, the insides of my Butterick 5032. I like this pattern, it was easy to fit and easy to sew, making it a double-winner for me! 🙂