Tag Archives: Peony Dress

Sew Colette 2.0 – Peony Franken AKA Pastilleony

Happy Halloween!!!

Just a reminder this is your last day to enter my giveaway – I’m doing the draw tomorrow 🙂

October’s sewalong item is the Colette Peony dress. I wanted to participate but I was really bogged down with other projects so I did something a little different 😉

Back in May, as part of the Sew Colette sewalong, I made my first fitted dress; Pastille. I did a pretty good job, too, all things considered. I did my first FBA, my first horizontal pleats, and a not too bad job on one of my first zippers even 🙂

However, when all was said & done I had some serious back neck gape which meant I only wore it once. Since then I’ve also lost some weight, and the dress didn’t fit quite as well anyway, but I figured why waste a perfectly good skirt? Skirts are relatively easy to take in, plus I still had some of the same fabric so I figured I could make the Peony bodice, adjust the darts on the skirt to make the thing smaller, then just Franken the two together, right?

Well it turned out ok but it was a lot more work than I anticipated! lol. Aside from fitting woes described in my earlier post, I probably should have taken the skirt apart at the sides & resized it that way instead because I didn’t realize how much I needed to take in, and now I have giant bum darts lol. Also the back isn’t fitting as smoothly as I’d like, and the neck still stands out from my body a bit – *sigh* I’m still chasing that elusive great fit, I guess 🙂

I also got a tad confused making the belt because I hadn’t initially cut enough pieces, plus the instructions baffled me lol. Luckily some kind soul on the Colette forums had explained it for someone else who had a similar issue 🙂

So I’m pleased to have salvaged a dress that otherwise would have gone unworn, and without further ado, I present to you my first Frankenpattern – Pastilleony!!

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Sew Colette 2.0 – Fitting the Peony Bodice

This is just a quick post to share a wonderful revelation I had!!

Ever since I started sewing (as an adult) just under a year ago, I’ve been questing for the perfect fit. I learned I DEFINITELY needed an FBA, and most often, a waist adjustment, but I’ve been struggling with this elusive fit problem: back neckline gaping.

I managed to reduce this problem a bit by taking 1″ off Center Back at the top, tapering down and then trueing the grain, darts, etc. But the problem was still there.

So when I made the muslin for the Peony bodice and the gaping was still there, I vowed “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!” and I turned to a post I read not too long ago, by Madalynne, on the relationship between front and back neck width.

In it she states that the back neck width should be 1/2″ wider than the front (so 1/4″ on the pattern). I didn’t know if this would help but I decided to try just in case. Lo and behold, my back neck width was 1.25″ wider than the front! So I re drafted the back neckline to be 1/4″ wider than the front, keeping the height and shoulder seam width the same.

As I said, I had no idea what would happen but to my shock, IT FIXED THE PROBLEM!!! Picture me in a bodice muslin, staring stupidly into the bathroom mirror in disbelief, then suddenly it clicked in that this was real and I did a ridiculous dance of joy!!!

I’m so grateful to Madalynne for the wealth of information she shares so freely with sewists like me who aspire to her level of greatness 🙂 Thanks Maddie!! You’re AWESOME! 😀