sewing classes in Chicago: Tchad: Elliott: Erin Benoit: Workroom: Sewing studio: Simplicity 1197

Erin works up Simplicity #1197

Erin has been on a roll the past couple of years with one vintage inspired dress after another.  She is like… well… writing a sewing machine doesn’t really work here because we aren’t a 60 year old dad, but she is on a roll nonetheless!

She started off with Simplicity #1197, a little a-line flared number with inset panels and an absolutely great shape.

Simplicity 1197
Simplicity #1197


If you look at the line drawings for the dress, the first thing that you will see is that those color blocked panels that join the neckline to the sides of the dress are made with an inset reinforced corner.  After she made up the muslin and fitted it, she asked if we could work around that.  The piqué she used frayed a lot and the practice runs for the technique didn’t go well.  She had just finished a couple of projects with inset panels and godets and she was just a little… over it.  It worked well enough, but with such a prominent point on the garment compromised going in, it seemed best to alter it so that the look was the same but the actual cut pieces were different.  We redrafted the neckline so that the neckline itself was one piece with a seam joining the body to the neckline, giving it a facing from the piece in the process. This worked out really well, and if you want to know how to do it for this, just let us know and we’ll show you how we did it.

The standard size 12 worked well, with just a little bit of shaping through the waist, as we usually have to do for her.  When you are shaping the waist of this dress out, be sure not to touch the center front panel unless you know what you are doing.  You want the shape to come in at the side seams and side front panel where it joins the center panel.  Try not to mess with that contrasting center panel or you will get distortion in the shape.

She added the contrasting cuffs to the sleeve to give it a sense of balance and a little pop, and here we go:

sewing classes in Chicago: Tchad: Elliott: Erin Benoit: Workroom: Sewing studio: Simplicity 1197
Simplicity #1197 with added cuffs in all its glory!

A note about what we did with the collar alteration here:  If you are doing this kind of alteration – creating a horizontal seam to eliminate inset corners, be careful.  We did it here and it looks great because of the contrast between this red and the white.  If you are working with matching fabrics or are using the same fabric for the front, you may end up ruining the line of the piece because it flattens everything out.

You can find Simplicity #1197 here.

You can read about Simplicity #1197 on Pattern Review here.

You can follow Erin on Instagram here.





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