Monday, December 16, 2013

Victory Patterns Lola

Just as comfy as sweats but soooo much cuter
It only seemed appropriate that the moment I decide to make a Lola – a cozy sweatshirt style dress from Victory Patterns – that all the local sweatshirt fleece runs and hides.  Now that it’s complete, the sweatshirt fleece has come back out to play.  That’s ok, I wasn’t sure I wanted to use it anyways.
Perfect fall dress
This purple knit was labeled ponte, but it’s pretty different than the pontes I’m used to.  Regardless I loved the color so some yardage found its way home with me.  It has more stretch than ponte and is a bit “ribbier.”  It’s nice and thick without being too heavy but sadly lacks a cozy, fleecy interior.
Princess seams to keep it interesting
This is my first time using Victory Patterns and right off the bat I noticed they’re drafted for tall people.  Despite the above knee length I knew I’d be chopping a few inches off but wasn’t quite sure how much.  (This was confirmed later on when I discovered that I couldn’t reach all the way to the bottom of the pockets without an assist from a friend or friendly stranger!)  Also I was excited to get my hands on a printed version as I try to avoid PDFs whenever possible.  What can I say – I’m not completely confident of my cutting & pasting skills when large projects involving tons of printouts are concerned.
World's deepest wraparound pockets
I sized the pattern down the lazy way by using 5/8” seam allowances instead of the written ¼”.  I cut the bands extra-long so I could figure out what length was needed later.  I also adjusted the width of the pockets to match the side skirt panels.  Despite their size I knew I’d use them less as functional pockets capable of holding small infants and more as interesting design features. 
Cute little triangle detail
Most of the construction was done on using my serger which meant it went pretty quick.  I did baste the bodice to the skirt to match up all the vertical seams.  Only one ended up being a smidge off but after another try I told myself “good enough” since it was on the back and serged it up.  (Long hair can cover up a number of imperfections.)

I want to keep my hands in these pockets all the time
After trying it on and making my pocket discovery I took 2” off the bottom which allowed me to reach the bottom of my pockets unassisted.  I attached the hem and sleeve bands after cutting them slightly longer than the pattern pieces since I wasn’t using actual ribbing.  This worked well on the sleeve and hem bands and pull them slightly in like the pattern photos showed.  The neckband was another story – even with a good press with lots of steam it wouldn’t lie flat.  Ripping out the serging was a bit of a nightmare with the navy thread blending in surprisingly well with the purple knit.  The band seemed a little puny at that point so I recut a new one, making sure the new one was shorter.    The “ribbiness” of the knit really became apparent and I probably ended up with a neckband about the same size as the pattern piece.  It still seemed a bit wavy but at this point there was no way I was going to rip it out again.  Instead I just blasted it with the iron and a massive cloud of steam and that did the trick.

Future favorite background?  I think so.
Funny thing, the other week I wore it to school when a girl in another class came over and asked if it was a Lola.  Then she reached into her bag and pulled out her own Lola which she had some issues with and had planned on asking the teacher how to fix it.  Turns out it was the fabric’s fault, it was super stretchy and had almost no recovery.  Luckily it was just a test garment that she made with whatever knit was lying around and has since gone back and fixed it.  Plus she has another version planned with sweatshirt fleece that I can’t wait to see.  Instances like this are some of the great things about attending fashion school.

Ahhh!! Evil clown!!
For the outside pictures I braved the cold to take photos in front of new mural my building’s alley.  A neighbor has spent a lot of time working on it and it’s turned out awesome.  Except for the evil clown that welcomes me home every time I go in the garage.  Because I believe ALL clowns are on the evil spectrum.

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