Feeling Uninspired by Simplicity 2219

Simplicity Maxi

I sewed a Simplicity pattern – the first I’ve sewn in years, because they are no longer available in Canada. I got the pattern at the PR Weekend swap, and I should love it… but I’m feeling very “meh” about it!

Simplicity Maxi

The good part is the fabric – another Micheal Levine ITY print that Anne brought back for me while she was on a business trip. The shipping is crazy to Canada (see my last post, which btw, you all had AMAZING comments on!) I’ve used a few other Micheal Levine prints lately – the polka dot gradient that I know a few people have bought since, the fabric for my maxi Jalie birthday dressย and a Santa Fe tank is beautiful but not on the blog! (On sale here,ย here and here – and boy I wish this was sponsored but it’s not!)

PicMonkey Collage

The bad part is the dang bodice. RAWR! It didn’t help that I accidentally followed the construction method for the version with sleeves, and got pretty far along before realising that the exactly opposite order was needed for the sleeveless version. I figured it out, and that was user error, but annoying nonetheless.

Here’s how the bodice came out as drafted:

Friends, that is my BRA we are seeing, not the tank I wore in later pictures! What??? I can accept the neckline peepshow, but not the almost 2″ of bra showing under the arm. No plunge bra or skimpy style is going to make that work!

In the end, I unpicked where the cups attach to the yoke, and unruched it all, pulling it as high as possible up the yoke. It’s now wearable… but ugh I hate having to wear a camisole underneath! It’ totally negates the point of a free and easy summer sundress. I might just give up and sew a modesty panel in the v-neckline, and see if that helps me actually want to wear this.

Simplicity Maxi

One last complaint: I sized down the measurements, and still had to take 4″ out of the bodice width. It is designed for knits, and designed to be close fitting, so what’s with that? I will say that I just sewed another Burda design, and was happy that once again the recommended size fits nicely. I guess I’m a Burda girl!

Simplicity Maxi

Enough moaning! I think the back is so pretty, and the skirt gathers at centre front and back and a nice detail. If nothing else, there is plenty of fabric in the skirt that could be refashioned into a tunic or tee if this doesn’t get worn!

Sorry this is a rather whiney blog post… I don’t hate the dress, but I also don’t love it! I’ve been avoiding blogging about it for a month, so i figured it was high time to just say something and move on. I don’t like having big projects go unrecorded!

 


39 thoughts on “Feeling Uninspired by Simplicity 2219

  1. I hate that when something just doesn’t sit well that I’ve made!

    I think it looks very pretty on you. And your sewing is perfect. I find so many flaws when I alter my girls RTW, makes me wonder why we are so critical of our own sewing!!

    Recently I unpicked 2 dresses, using the fabric for a skirt. They just never made me happy! And life’s too short. :o)
    I prefer Butterick patterns. :o)

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    1. My sewing is NOT perfect… but in a big print, who can tell? There really is a lot of satisfaction in refashioning things so they’ll be worn more – I’m often even more proud than when I made the original garment! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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  2. I LOATHE this current shoddy pattern drafting that flashes miles of underarm and plunges to the navel. I see it in RTW too- how do the designers convince themselves that all women can cheerfully ditch their bras or don’t mind showing off the [let’s be honest here] general shabbiness of our unders?! Most irksome. I think the modesty piece is the way to go here

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    1. YES! I mean, that V goes down to my nipple… which means It’s always going to be wide open on top and show a giant valley of bra. Add the low underarm, and WTF? I guess if I was very tall with a flatter chest, this would sit differently, but for goodness sakes, I”m sewing a large size, so what tiny proportion of people would fit both categories?

      Do you have a favourite Big 4 line for drafting? Who can I trust?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Vogue and McCalls suit me. And then equal 2nd with McC is Style Arc. I dabble elsewhere but the vast bulk of my patterns are those. V and M add lots of ease into some designs, BUT you can trust the finished measurements printed on the pattern itself. I don’t always do an FBA or lower bust point, but that’s all I need to do usually

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  3. Your dress does look pretty on you if that’s any consolation ๐Ÿ™‚ I like that style on you! I sewed up a Simplicity recently and it was so huge I could’t believe it. I swore off them for ever more after that. I don’t know what they are thinking with that amount of ease and honestly I wondered how others are faring since I do see a lot of Simplicity being made up with outstanding fit success. They must be seriously sizing down but forgetting to mention that ๐Ÿ™‚ I read Mimi G.’s bio and she describes how she initially debated (and won for her pattern line) against adding so much ease.

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    1. This is why you (general you) really should flat-pattern measure. In other words, learn your preferred ease in knits and wovens and then measure the tissue/paper to see where it differs and adjust accordingly.

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        1. I understand, but … really … you’re only going to get the fit shown in the photographs if you’re the model shown in the photographs. ๐Ÿ™‚ Which is true for any pattern or RTW item.

          Personally, I don’t trust (not sure if trust is the right word here) any pattern, indie or Big 4/5, so I always either flat-pattern measure or lay a TNT over the new pattern to compare. It takes only a few minutes and is never a waste of time.

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  4. I agree, the back is very pretty! Wasting time and $$$$ on a garment that fits that badly is very discouraging, and I wonder how many beginning sewing enthusiasts give up after a few of those. I’ve seen it happen time and time again.

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    1. I think the beginning stages of learning to sew are always tough! I used to take 5โ€ out in the Centre back of Colette Patterns before realizing that fit shouldnโ€™t be that hard! ๐Ÿ˜‚

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  5. I do like the dress on you, but what matters most is how you feel.

    Pattern Drafting: Right now I’m struggling with a toile for a jacket and have a strong suspicion that it’s drafted badly. This evening I’m posting it on YouTube to get other opinions because I just don’t know if my body is wrong, or the drafting is bad. We shouldn’t have to question that when we buy a pattern.

    Simplicity Patterns: I was thumbing through the Early Fall book the other day and saw a Maple Leaf on several of the patterns. I’m wondering if they’re planning to make a move back to Canada now that they’re affiliated with the Massive 4?

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    1. Oh dear! I don’t think it’s your body that is wrong for the pattern – definitely sounds like the pattern itself has raised some red flags for you! Hope the sewing community can give you some good answers!

      I’m fascinated by the maple leaf thing – very curious to see what happens next!

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  6. The fabric is truly awesome. I totally understand why you’re bummed because it deserved a more pleasant crafting experience. Simplicity has never worked for me…

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    1. I definitely feel less annoyed now that they aren’t available… because maybe I just don’t want to sew them anyway! ๐Ÿ˜›

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  7. There is a reason why I prefer to sew with burda. I know what I get and what fits. With simplicity and all the similar pattern companies it is always kind of a surprise how the fit is going to be. And fitting is not funny. I love patterns that just work without the necessity to fit. (Happens rarely, but at least minimal fit).

    But the fabric is fabulous. Love it.

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  8. This is why I gave up dressmaking for myself. I just couldn’t get anything to fit properly and I don’t know enough about making alterations to make it work. I would love to have a pants pattern that fits really well because finding well-fitting pants in clothing shops is not easy. I’m always so impressed by how beautiful your garments look.

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      1. I find if they fit on the legs and hips they are always way too big and baggy around the back of my waist. I think it’s a case of poor cut and I’m short so that doesn’t help. I’d like to have a basic pattern I could make into long or three quarter pants. I don’t need to have a zip and would be happy with an elasticised waist, not skin tight but not too baggy either. I do like to have pockets. Perhaps I’m too fussy. I have one shop bought pair that I love and was thinking I should try to draft a pattern from them.

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  9. Oh dear, I hate it when this happens – especially with the good fabric!

    I think it looks nice, but the top does feel unbalanced against the bottom (that could be the stark contrast of the blank?).

    Are you a “wear it anyway” person? If you aren’t, you should refashion now and save yourself the annoyance of the journey ๐Ÿ˜Ž

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    1. I think you are spot on about the balance – thank you for putting it into words for me! Maybe it’s the combo of the empire waist with the giant v-neck? I wish I’d kept the scraps so I could consider cobbling together a new bodice!

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  10. I love that fabric–just so interesting.
    I am just returning to sewing after many years away and I really love
    what folks are doing now. Very inspirational.
    Why can you not get Simplicity patterns in Canada?

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  11. I made that dress a few years ago and it was low cut, but not too low, and the underarm was fine. Iโ€™m not as well endowed as you are, so maybe that was the difference? Itโ€™s the only maxi Iโ€™ve ever worn out in public!

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  12. I’m sorry that it didn’t work out for you! I grew up on big 4, since that was all that was available to me as a teen in the 90s, so I got used to adjusting as I went. But yeah, this flashing all the bra thing isn’t cool. I’m so glad I tried on the bodice for the McCall’s dress I recently made as I went, because basically the whole front was hanging out! But I’ve had Big 4s that I’ve really liked, and I’m glad the Burdas are working so far.

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  13. That sucks that it was such a pain to fit! Argh. I havenโ€™t often been happy with Big 4 knit patterns. It looks great though. Maybe some time in the closet while you forget about the construction trauma? ๐Ÿ˜‚

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  14. Bummer! It takes some of the fun out of sewing to have to struggle with fit! It looks great on you, if that’s any comfort. I’m used to big 4 patterns because they’re what I grew up with and have success with McCalls and Vogue. Simplicity has alot of ease (except for Mimi G which is spot on) so I’m used to ‘adjusting’ as I go, not a great method :). I think the fabric and the look is good on you though!! But if you don’t love it….maybe a future remake?

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  15. It’s really too bad you’re not happy with it because it’s such a lovely dress! It works so well with the mixed fabrics and I love the design of the upper back especially. Sewing with Big 4 is a real learning curve, isn’t it? I rarely use them but they really are amazing patterns once you’re used to them. That said, if you’re happy with indies why waste your time/fabric with patterns you’re less enthusiastic about?

    I’m a huge Burda fan girl too, but one major problem with Burda vs Big 4 is that they often don’t have a great size range. Although they do have Tall, Petites and Plus patterns, quite a lot of their straight-sized patterns only come in 5 sizes!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I really hate Simplicity patterns! I broke down & bought one for pajama pants to make christmas presents last year, & they were AWFUL. My girls are 5’10” & 5’11”, My son is 6’1″ & my husband is 6’3″- those pants were so high waisted, & far too long, & these are people who are ALL LEG. The oversized fit is a common theme with Simplicity, & it really hurts those of us who don’t have all the skills to fix the patterns. I’ll just stick to Burda, because I got lucky with their slacks pattern

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  17. Do you have enough fabric to re-cut the bodice? that might make it worthwhile. I feel your pain about showing underwear. If you’re going to see the bra, you might as well use the bra as the dress bodice! LOL what is the Burda pattern that you like better?

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  18. Perhaps it is my screen, but it seems the fabric colors are much more muted than your usual style. I wonder if that contributes to your discomfort with this? The whole dress with a fitted bodice, with no room for breasts is really common and very frustrating. Sorry it is affecting you as your dress is very lovely.

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