Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Simplicity 8456 (1969)- Simple Purple Dress

What you plan on making isn't always what you end up with. That was the story of Simplicity 8456 from 1969. Nonetheless, the ending was happy. A truly "feel good" experience.


1.) FABRIC: I'm happy to report that the fabric (a soft, cotton blend) was okay this time. I will admit that sometimes my results are "flouncier" and less stiff than the fabric on the envelope pic. But, I don't really mind that. I just resisted the urge to make a "that's what she said" joke. Aren't you proud of me? Oh wait, I guess I just...never mind.

2.) DETAILS PART I: Okay, so I left off the welts on the front of the dress. I suppose that was the detail that really "makes" the dress. However, I remember the fiasco of trying to line up the pockets on another knit dress that I made (the red and white one). I couldn't get those buggers lined up, probably due to the stretchiness of the fabric pulling them out of place (despite me using pins).

So what did I do? I gave up and left them off all together. I RULE! (said in the voice of Kevin Spacey from "American Beauty")

But seriously, I dug the "simplicity" of the dress without them. I just did a pun. My dad would be so proud.

3.) DETAILS PART II: So there is much top stitching on the dress, but you can't really see it in pics or in life. Doesn't it suck when you work really hard to sew something straight and pretty and then you can't even see the detail? Any tips for making top-stitching pop out more?

4.) FIT: No trouble here!
5.) PHOTOGRAPHY: What's up with the photographs making all my dresses look "wrinkly" even when they're not? Perhaps one of the mysteries of the universe or just related to really shitty lighting. Take your pick.

I'm happy to say there wasn't a whole lot to report here. It went really well and raised my confidence level. Okay, so I copped out a tad, but eh, I'm lazy.

Happy Sewing,


  1. One way to make your topstitching stand out it to use a triple stitch (some machines just have a double stitch). This is usually depicted on your machine as 3 (or 2) stitches side by side. On this page it is stitch 02
    The sewing machine usually does one stitch and then goes back and does a second and then a third (so it is moving the fabric back and forth from front to back) and if you pull on the fabric while you are sewing it will not make the stitches even, so practice (especially with knits) to be sure it will work for your fabric and garment before you do it. Taking it out would be a lot of work.

  2. @The Hojnackes: Wow, I'll have to see if my machine has that stitch. Thanks for the tip!

  3. Чудесное платье! Так быстро!!!

  4. That colour looks amazing! I'd totally follow up what @The Hojnackes says too, my machine has a triple stitch (I use it most for reinforcing the armhole seams) and I reckon that would make the top stitch pop out, also the use of a lighter or bolder thread... so it stands out a bit too.


  5. Hey Astrid,
    That purple is a great color on you, and your fit looks great.
    Have you tried the blind hem stitch on your machine?
    It would probably just take you a few minutes to learn, and it is so much easier and faster than any other method for hemming. It is the true lazy sewer's way to instant gratification that looks really polished. I learned how to do it on mine, and hemming (which used to be frustrating) takes no time at all.
    I look forward to seeing what you sew up next!

  6. Hi Astrid,
    Didn't see a contact link on your blog, hence this being posted in the comments! But have you checked out Finicky Finds on Etsy?
    She has quite a number of great 60s-mod dress patterns.
    And in relation to your post: I agree with Veronica's suggestion of contrast stitching. No choice but to notice it then!

  7. I Love this dress- just what I had in mind for the winter 2011