McCall's 7187 in Vintage Silk Noil

Well hello! 

Just prior to Christmas, I posted a picture over on the PDG instagram asking input for which pattern I should make. Well, upon another look through my pattern collection I found a new pattern that inspired me and decided to make that one. McCall's 7187.

This darling semi-fitted dress features a great center-front inset, a dropped waistline and several skirt variations. I chose the gathered skirt variation. 

I made mine out of a fantastic, 38" wide, vintage silk noil in black and chose a new taupe silk crepe de chine for the lining. 

The pattern had 3" of ease (for more on ease see this post I just wrote) at the bust and 5" at the hip. Too. Much. Ease. 

Using the "finished garment measurements' on the envelope, I decided to choose a size 8, which left me with 1/2 of ease in the bust and 1/2 in the hip. I wanted the dress to be very fitted, and it is. Next time I make it, I do think I'll make a 10 (or sew 1/2" seams instead of 5/8") to allow myself a bit more room. 

I have quite a deep curve in my lower back (I believe they call that a 'swayback', which makes me think of the horse from The Little Rascals, and that isn't exactly something I want to associate with my body type, but oh well) and the dress 'pooled' there horribly. I ended making 1/2" darts on the bodice back from the zipper out towards the side seams. This fixed the pooling issue quickly and easily. You can see the darts more clearly in the picture of the lining. This is a nice tutorial on how to make these adjustments, if you too find you have this problem. 

Next time I make this dress, I'll also be sure to make it out of fabric that isn't black. This black silk is so 'nubby' and beautiful, but you can't fully appreciate the design of the dress. The black hides the darling inset at the front. I'd love to make it with a print, or with a contrasting fabric for the panel next time.

I didn't have a long enough black zipper, so I attached the lining at back opening, turning the exterior fabric inside to finish the edge, and created a key hole. I love the keyhole. The lining does pull at the hook & eye at the top (you'll see this in the picture above), so I need to figure out how to solve that. This is without a doubt, the best invisible zipper I've ever installed and I wish the dang dress wasn't so dark so y'all could appreciate how nice it looks. 

Yes, I wore this dress, and yes, my lotion stained the lining and yes, you can see where my bra kept the lotion from staining the bodice. The important part is, I drafted my own pieces for the lining. 

I am not a pro at pattern drafting. I have no formal education in garment construction or sewing in general. I am completely self-taught, and, well, mom-taught (can't forget that! Thanks mom!) and so when I have to draft there's a lot of uncertainty. There's a lot of crumpling of paper and scratching things out, and under-the-breath cursing. 

But I DID IT. I could use the bodice back and skirt back pieces for the lining as well, but the front skirt and front bodice had to drafted because A) I didn't have enough of the lining fabric to cut out the inset on the bias and B) I wanted a single, smooth, bodice piece across the front, instead of the inset.

If you're a beginner or intermediate seamstress and you want to know more about linings, see this post I wrote.

Additionally, I made bias tape from scraps of the lining fabric and finished the inside neck edge with it. The neck edge, keyhole edges, sleeve hems and bottom hem are all finished by hand with a whip stitch. 

Overall, I'm thrilled with the way this dress turned out. I am visiting Nashville here in several weeks and, luckily for me, have a fancy dinner to attend. I think I know what I'll be wearing. ;)

Have you made this dress? What fabric did you choose and did you find that the sizing was accurate? I'd love to hear from you!

Other details: Shoes by Sam Edelman. Gold bracelet was a gift, so I can't tell you where it's from. Both fabrics from The Tin Thimble, though both are sold out, you should still check out our apparel fabrics. 

1 comment

  1. Very beautiful dress! I especially love it styled with those shoes, they are beautiful! It is quite hard to make out the detail in the black fabric though :(


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