Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pattern Review: BWOF 04/2008 Dress 101

This is my 13th entry for the Pattern Stash Contest at Pattern Review.

Pattern Description: According to BWOF: a swingy hem flounce keeps this knee-length dress in motion. A self-fabric waist drawstring replaces a belt, and the front is fastened with tie-strings laced through metal eyelets. Fashionistas will wear a leopard-print bikini-top underneath and allow glimpses between the buttons!

Pattern Sizing: This pattern comes in sizes 34-40 (U.S. RTW size of 2/4-10). I made a 40.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, I think so.

Were the instructions easy to follow? I wouldn't say they are easy to follow... but I figured out my way around. This dress is basically put together like a button up blouse, which I have made before so this helped. The hardest part for me to follow was how to put on the placket for the front... but after staring at the instructions for a long while, it came to me. This dress is rated "intermediate difficulty, for advanced learners" by BWOF.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I have loved this dress ever since I saw it. I ordered this issue from ebay to see if I would like the magazine before subscribing to it. Well I did, and I did subscribe. I like the safari look, but with the femininity of the flounce hem and lace up closure.

I was very intimidated to make this dress because of the instructions and that's why I put off making it for so long. But with the Pattern Stash Contest going right now, it motivated me to give it a shot.

Fabric Used: I used a blue cotton poplin from Denver Fabrics. I think I spent about $20 to make this dress.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: I omitted the shoulder tabs- I didn't feel that they added anything.

I love the look of the welt pockets in front but I didn't want to a) make them, or b) have the extra bulkiness that they add. So I thought about it and thought about it and it finally came to me- make faux welt pockets. So all I did was make the strip of fabric that goes on the front of the dress- the welt part- and sewed this on the front to give it the look of the pocket without actually having to make real welt pockets.

The third change I made was to the lace up front. Instead of using metal eyelets, I made small buttonholes for the drawstring to fit through. I also widened the drawstring to make it easier to sew together. Instead of sewing the drawstring into a tube and turning it, I folded the drawstring in half length-wise and pressed. Then I opened it up and folded both long edges to meet the middle press mark and pressed again. Finally, I folded the entire thing in half and edgestitched around it- does this make sense? It's very easy.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? No, I probably won't sew this one again but I do recommend others to make it at least once.

Conclusion: I love this dress! It's my first successful BWOF creation. It gave me the confidence to tackle other BWOF patterns! By the way, I wore a lace trimmed camisole underneath- not a leopard print bikini top- HA!

I thought about doing a tutorial on the shirt placket, or the faux welt pockets but don't want to spend the time and effort if no one is interested. Let me know if this would help you, and I will do one.



  1. I love this! Sweet and sexy at the same time!

  2. GORGEOUS!!! That dress is the first ever BWOF I made.

  3. I'm interested in making this dress but have a question about the open lace-up front. As I probably wouldn't wear it laced so wide, does the pattern fit allow you to wear it closed up or would I need to adjust for this? I have a large bust.

  4. Gail- I have a smallish bust (B cup) and pulling the front closed can be done but is tight- so I would definitely recommend an adjustment to make it feasible to close it.

  5. What an awesome job for your first BWOF. I still haven't up the guts to make a BWOF yet. I have a subscription.

  6. Super cute! Good job! I love seeing BWOF patterns and want to try one, but they seem too difficult.