Before I made this dress I took a bodice fitting class at Sew Me Something in Straford Upon Avon with the expert tuition of Jules and Heather Jacks, the winner of the second Great British Sewing Bee. I made up a toile ready for the class and Jules helped me work out some of my issues. It turned out the alterations I had made to the shoulders to stop the gape had in turn caused issues around the front of the arm. With that fixed we carried out a 1" Full Bust Adjustment which meant the bodice fitted perfectly in the calico and in the below barkcloth dress but left me with a way too full bodice in quilting cotton. Thankfully though I had listened and learned so was able to do a 1/4 FBA by myself which is perfect for the quilting cottons and voiles I usually use.
Jules also showed me how to turn the two darts on the back bodice into a seam and reduce the gaping I get at the back of the neck. I had been doing this by graduating the back seam when putting in the zip but wanted to learn a more professional way which means I could pattern match on obvious prints if I choose to. I enjoyed my day at Sew Me Something and love that Jules has lots of tips to avoid unnecessary hand sewing, that's definitely my preferred option!! I really loved wearing this dress, I also made a bright pink silk jacket to go with it and felt great!
Dress: Made by me using vintage barkcloth found on Etsy
Pattern: Emery by Christine Haynes
Shoes: New Look
Necklace: Tatty Devine (old)
A couple of close up photographs of the front and the back of the bodice, I was really happy how this one turned out and as you can see the extra fabric fold I sometimes get where the front bodice meets the sleeve has gone!