From the moment I saw this beautiful rainbow ikat fabric, I knew I had to make a bold dress with it. Too often we see a larger scale print like this and we think of making something simple, but I really wanted to push the boundaries and make something with strong lines and shape. Since I’m on a bit of a print mixing tear I also bought this olive ikat for trim, as I think the color and scale of the checks plays really well with the bold color of the main fabric.
My muslin came out fairly iffy, but partly because I needed to do a better job of marking the gather stitches at the front under the X- if they are off even by a little, it throws the whole X shape off, which ruins the look of the dress. I made sure in the final fabric I was really diligent about connecting the pieces to the front X panel, and ironed with every stage to make it easier on myself.
I did run into a few hiccups while sewing this piece though, which I shouldn’t share but… oh well. I sewed one of the sleeves on inside out, and didn’t realize until I was hemming it later. The seam underneath the sleeve is facing out, and you can see the overlock stitches! I didn’t go back and change it because while this fabric is a bit heavier in weight, it is loosely woven, and frays easily. I didn’t want to risk taking something out and having the whole seam messed up and be visible, so I just kept it. It’s barely visible, but a good reminder to myself to always triple check everything before I sew!
Another hiccup I ran into was accidentally using iron-on fusible instead of interfacing. Plain fusible is intended to fuse fabrics together, for example, for quilting or appliqué. But I didn’t have anything labeled (I need serious help organizing my craft room), and wondered why all of a sudden everything was so sticky. The fusible wasn’t going anywhere once I ironed it, but luckily, the fusible did provide just a hint of thickness to the olive ikat for structure. Surprisingly, it worked out well, and actually made the hand sewing that I needed to do later, easier to sew.
In the end, I really could not be more pleased with the result. This dress may seem crazy and specific, but I can see myself wearing this to speaking events, conferences, wine tasting and more, and trust me when I say that Marina will inherit this one day. Other than the inside out sleeve, the piece is finished perfectly (thanks to finally buying a serger) which means it will stand the test of time!