I picked up this mustard floral fabric last year at the Golden West Swap Meet in Huntington Beach. It’s one of my favorite places to get fabric for exceptionally low prices. I think this ran me about $2 a yard. Everytime we vacation in Huntington Beach, which is about once a year, we all love to hit up the swap meet and I select tons of fabric for the upcoming year. Luckily we drive, so getting it home isn’t an issue.
I had a ton of fun dreaming about all the possibilities of this fabric, but when I saw McCall’s M7717 at JOANN, I knew it was the one. I love the ’70s boho vibe of the flowing sleeves. I also appreciate that they stop at the elbow–making them practical for everyday wear. I hate when I have full length bell sleeves and I try to do things like wash dishes or change diapers. Those sleeves quickly become a liability!
Along with the sleeves, I was also fond of the fitted waist. I would consider this a universally flattering dress.
The sewing process of M7177:
- The biggest issue I had was that the fit of the neckline was terribly off once constructed. I’m not sure where I went wrong. The zipper also ended up being way too high, resulting in the back of the dress not properly resting on my back. To fix this, I took up the shoulder seams, and turned down the sides of the top of the zipper towards the inside of the dress, then stitched in place. This gave the back of the dress a subtle V shape, which you can kind of see below.
- I used some satin to line the bodice, and I think it made it look so beautiful inside. There’s something super satisfying about having your items look just as nice on the inside as they do on the outside. The same could be said for people :)
- Because I was working with a woven fabric prone to fraying, I used my narrow hem foot to enclose the raw edge. This foot is sometimes called a rolled hem foot, and I got three when I ordered a fantastic set of sewing machine feet from Amazon. It’s an inexpensive version from China, but I use all the feet a ton and have never had any issues with them. You can see the one I ordered in the widget below.
The finished edge a narrow hem foot creates can be seen below. It rolls the raw under under for you, so you don’t have to iron it. Without the rolling hem foot, you would have to turn you edge in a quarter inch, and iron it, then turn it in a quarter inch AGAIN, and iron it again before sewing. With this foot, all you have to do is guide the fabric into the curve so the foot can roll it in for you as you sew.
The only alteration I made to the original pattern pieces was extending the skirt to be knee length. If I made this pattern again, I plan on lengthening the bodice as well so the waistband sits a little lower. Right now it fits just a little bit above my natural waist.
Overall, I’m pretty happy with how this little number turned out. If you make it, let me know! I’d love to see what you create!