And it's true - these days I'm making quite an effort to wear a lot more colour, made easier by the fact that we're having very hot Spring weather and there's just something about the sunshine that makes me want to wear a bright colourful dress. Which brings me to my latest project, another dress made using New Look 6144, this time from a bright Kelly green cotton sateen:
Let me just say it is IMPOSSIBLE to get a decent photo of this dress! The smooth surface and slight sheen of the cotton sateen shows up every wrinkle, ripple and seam of the dress in photographs - it doesn't look that bad in real life. The back looks even worse in the photo although in real life it looks ok (from what I can see over my shoulder in the mirror that is).
After I made the plaid version a while back that turned out slightly too big, I decided to make this dress a bit smaller given the fabric has a slight stretch to it. So I cut out a size 8 at the bust and a size 10 for the rest which was a mistake because it turned out very tight and I had to let out the side seams so much at the hips that it has the tiniest seams.
I made a small 2cm swayback adjustment but it wasn't quite enough because there is still a bit of pooling of fabric in my lower back, especially at the base of the zipper:
And something funny is happening at the centre front because there is a bit of fabric folding and not sitting flat under those front neckline pleats:
From what I can see from other people's review of this pattern they didn't experience this problem, so it's probably caused by operator error. The pleating at the neckline was rather complicated and involved slashing one part so that the other could slide through it - perhaps I didn't slash down far enough so it doesn't sit flat. I'm not going to unpick it and do it again though to fix it - I'll just lazily wear a brooch there or ignore it instead! I also think the centre front darts extent too high onto my bust instead of finishing below the bust point as they should (that's what breastfeeding two kids will do to you sadly).
So my verdict: I love the colour of this fabric, but not so much the dress. Partly that is because cotton sateen is quite wrinkle prone and I should have either lined or underlined this dress (which I did neither because I want it to be a cool summer dress), or made a less fitted style. Partly though it is the pattern, whilst I like the neckline and sleeves if I want to make this again I think I'll frankenpattern it onto my favourite New Look pattern, New Look 6968 which is a similar fitted sheath dress but has a waist seam so it achieves a much better fit. I'll still wear it though because it still looks better than a lot of RTW dresses I see being worn out on the street and it is a gorgeous colour.
Out of interest I took another photo of the dress when I got home from work in the afternoon to see how badly wrinkled it became:
and funnily enough it doesn't seem to be that much worse really! Sure there are quite a few more horizontal wrinkles around the body and the sleeves, but I think wearing cotton sateen is just like wearing linen or any other natural fibre - you just have to accept a few wrinkles. Although if I ever see some wool crepe in this shade of green I'll snap it up in a second and sew a replacement dress.
Thanks to Oscar for photobombing me - now I can see that black and white are the perfect colour to wear with this shade of green!