Finished! Woop woop! The pattern is McCalls 6120, but I don't know what date it's from as I can't find it on the Vintage Sewing Pattern Wiki - any ideas? 1960 maybe? I'm calling it The Birthday Party Dress - it's not my birthday and I'm not having a party, but for some reason wearing it makes me feel like a precocious girl itching to get to the party and do the mashed potato.
Man, it feels so great to have another vintage sewing project under my belt. And a red bow belt at that! Made from leftover fabric from my Ceylon dress.
The project came together pretty easily, up until the point when I came to insert the zip in the back and noticed a freak 2 inch discrepancy on each side between the centre back of the bodice and the centre back of the skirt - see above. I couldn't understand this as I'd folded the pleats quite accurately. Maybe it's a feature of inserting a lapped zip? But it didn't make any sense to me, so I had to perform some jiggery pokery on the pleats to pull the skirt edge in to meet the bodice. And after that I couldn't face the pressure and confusion of the lapped zip instructions with all its references to laps, flaps and semi-flaps, so I stuck to what I knew and went with a centred zip. I know, I know, living on the edge!
I learnt how to make pleats! The toil involved in these babies made me feel extremely guilty about the fact that, when I was at secondary school, my mum used to tack - yes, tack - the pleats of my school uniform skirt up every Sunday night before ironing them. Sheesh! She really shouldn't have bothered, particularly because as a teenager experimenting with ways to attract boys I'd roll my skirt half way up my thighs anyway, thus ruining the pleats and my mum's hard work. Oops.
I particularly like the bow belt and am planning on making another one in the yellow floral fabric leftover from my first dress to give it another look.
[Soundtrack: 'Party Lights' by Claudine Clark]