I wanted to create another halter neck dress that had a contrasting band along the bodice top - it's a style I've always liked. I’m sure there’s a name for it, but it’s certainly lost on me what it is! I hadn’t seen a pattern which had exactly what I wanted so I ended up mashing a couple of patterns together. I used New Look 6146 for the bodice and waistband, then I turned to New Look 6048 for the bodice skirt and halter neck straps. I’d used pattern 6048 before and really liked the fit of it, blogged here.
I love making cotton summer dresses. I just find they always come together a lot easier than dresses out of polyesters like chiffon, silk or satin. I find cotton fabric a lot easier to handle in the sewing process. I bought a white quilt cotton for the contrasting bands and I bought a pale purple cotton voile for the lining. Again because it’s a lot easier to work with and I find it more comfortable and breathable in the summer.
The dress came together pretty well without too many hiccups. I had to make a bit of an adjustment on the princess seams in the bust area as I fall between sizes so I usually have to take it in a little. Because I did a pattern mash up there wasn’t guidance on where to put the halter neck straps to the different bodice pattern so that required a bit of time pinning the straps on the dress at different angles and spots till I had it just where I wanted it. I tend to like to wear the straps quite wide and closer to my armholes. Not sure why, but I always find it looks better on me like that. I also opted to add strips of plastic boning down the front, side and back seams as I was a little nervous of it not staying up. I bought fabric covered boning and cut strips of 11cm in length and machine sewed them down onto the lining. I added some length to the skirt (about 1.5 inches) also so it fell just under the knee and chose not to have pockets.
I am quite in love with this dress but given I made it in Winter I haven’t worn it yet! It will be too cold to wear this dress until about November, which I’m sure will creep up on me soon enough. I tend to measure time in units of ‘clothing items I have to make’ and I am sorted for fabric and patterns to sew garments well into next Summer. Once I get through that sewing to do list it’ll be sweltering here again. I hope!