What I wear, when I wear it, and how it works on my bike
The 4740 is done and it’s . . .fine. I think the pieces got a bit distorted in the cutting out process–the neckline is not quite symmetrical–and the fabric is (as suspected) to heavy and floppy for the onseam pockets. Also, I really am high/short-waisted. Even with the length I took out from the waist, the pockets sit much lower on me than the illustration. I also had to shorten it by three inches at the hem and it’s still too long. I may stitch the seam over the pockets and do away with them. They are not terribly functional and the heavy stretch of the fabric does not help. They hold an ID and a folded 20. Maybe a lipstick. My house keys were awkward in them and I would not trust them for my smartphone.
Also, once the dress was done, I had to unpick the shoulders and take in the seams because the sleeve sat about an inch down my bicep.
So. It’s not perfect and I probably won’t ever wear it to work, but it’s comfortable and cute and I wore it all weekend. I will likely make it again, but in a woven, to see if the issue was stretching during cutting. I may try tracing my patterns on knits from now on, to see if that mitigates the issue. It would be very nice to have a mat large enough to use a rotary cutter, but I don’t have that luxury.
Picked up a few more vintage patterns from Etsy. The one I’m most interested in is Simplicity 7122. You can see there is a bust dart in the princess seam. I had run across about a dozen 1960s patterns with that dart in the seam, which I have never seen before (not that I’ve spent my whole life noticing garment construction. So really, it’s more like “in the last few years, I’ve never seen a pattern with both princess seams and a bust dart”), and this was the one I purchased.Not only was it the right size, but the pattern is for a kimono sleeve (cut in one piece with the bodice) which I’d like to try.
I found another version, Butterick 3211 (apparently, the number was later re-assigned to a My Little Pony toy), with a raglan sleeve. It was a difficult choice, actually, but in the end I think I’m more a kimono-sleeve than a raglan sleeve.
I also got Simplicity 9204 from 1970, a semi-fitted dress with a very modest keyhole neckline. The shape is right in my wheelhouse. If I can practice a few zippers into nearly perfect, I think this would be really nice for the plum colored linen. I also got Simplicity 6094 from 1974 because I really like the seaming on the bodice.
Finally, I ran across (but did not buy) two Vogues (7302 A and 7593) from the 60’s which looked wonderful. One was a bust size 40 and much too large for me and the other was both the wrong size AND $35 and much too expensive for me. I hope it gets a good home, though.
It seems a little strange that I’m lighting on so many patterns from the late 60s and early 70s, as I never think of the styles of those times as appealing. But the lines are simple and flattering and I think I can handle the sewing. Once I get over the damn zipper thing.