I think this is the best garment I have ever made.
I still consider myself on the beginner side of intermediate when it comes to sewing, since I have followed commercial patterns and not much else. But I felt as though my skills got a little more refined with this one, since I adapted a pattern, and had to deal with print matching (a new concept for me!).
It all started when I found this incredible pixel fabric, and knew it would be perfect for a dress to wear to PAX East (on our non-cosplay day). For some reason, I see it as a floral print – but maybe I’m just imagining things? 🙂
I used my favorite Simplicity 1419 pattern, but didn’t think the peter pan neckline would really go well with the pixels. My first thought was to make a pixelated peter pan collar, but when I sewed one I couldn’t get it to lay flat or match up with the squares on the print.
My next idea was to do a pixelated v-neck, and was so happy when it actually worked out!
Ahhhh…the way the pixels match up along the zipper seam makes me SOOOO happy! (This project made me and my perfectionism a bit crazy, but it was worth it!)
I’ll add some process photos to the end of the post, so keep scrolling if you want to see how it came together.
Although I debuted this dress at PAX, I have worn it SO many times since. It’s so comfy, cute, and just my style!
I didn’t hesitate when selecting a purse. My amazing Jump From Paper bag was clearly the right choice:
We took these pics in Harvard Square. It was pretty crowded, so we had to really get our timing right to avoid having people in the background. Dave would be like “Wait for it…wait for it…NOW!!” and then snap as many photos as possible before another group walked by.
My pixel bow from ThinkGeek was another obvious selection. I just adore how this whole outfit came together!
Pixel Dress: made by me 🙂 (Simplicity 1419 pattern and Michael Miller geometric fabric via Cotton Candy Fabrics)
Purse: Jump From Paper Cheese
Jacket: Candie’s via Kohl’s
Belt: made by me 🙂
Hair: ThinkGeek Mini 8-Bit Hair Bows
Shoes: B.A.I.T. Black Roni Heel via Modern Millie Shop
Sunglasses: Charming Charlie
Ok, and now a bit of info on sewing the dress…
Unfortunately, Simplicity 1419 is no longer available. It’s such a bummer, since it is such a versatile pattern, and easy to sew with a great fit. I have sewed it 4 times now, and know I will do more in the future.
When sewing it with the pixel fabric, I wanted to be conscious of the print, making sure to match it up on all seams. In order to do this, I had to make a few adjustments, starting with the darts. To keep them symmetrical, I folded the fabric along one of the vertical lines in the print and marked the dart with a piece of masking tape (which I actually do on ALL darts when I sew, it makes it easier to keep a straight line!). They didn’t end up in exactly the same place as indicated in the pattern, but it worked out beautifully.
The neckline was a bit scary, since I had to veer farther away from the original pattern. I started by sketching out the neckline I wanted on the back of the fabric with a pencil. I originally intended to sew just outside of the pixels themselves (hope that makes sense…you can see below that my pencil marks don’t align perfectly with the pixels).
Then, I interfaced a piece of black fabric to use as my facing and pinned it to the bodice.
When it was time to sew, I changed my mind and did not follow my pencil marks. Instead, I followed the lines of the pixels.
(I actually totally regret doing this, and wish I stayed with the original plan – you’ll see why later in this post)
Here’s how it looked before turning:
I clipped my seams and turned it right-side out.
Now, it’s impossible to avoid having a bit of bulk at the corners. This is why I wish I sewed juuust outside the lines. The fabric on the inside prevented me from having the sharp look I was going for – you can kind of see it below:
I’m sure not many people will notice that they are not perfect right angles, nor will they care…but it bothers me! lol.
I knew I wanted a full skirt, and that the pleated one in the pattern wouldn’t work well with the pixel print. Since I needed the bottom hem to be cut straight across, I had to go with a gathered skirt. Good thing they are easy to sew!
Below are the two back pieces, and the front piece.
Since every good dress has pockets, I cut nice deep ones out of the same pixel fabric. And you better believe I matched the pixels…because I’m crazy like that.
Thanks for stopping by!