Distressed Autumn Library dress, Vogue 1190


Why did I choose this pattern?. I really liked this pattern because it was another new shape for me. A break away from the sheath again. There is nothing in my closet that comes close to this dress! The skirt has a bit of hem flare but it wasn't too wide in the hips or at the hem.

Pattern Description & sizing:

How do I look? There aren't enough modifications for it to look different than the line drawing, basically twins right? It's a bit low in the front, but not crazy. I'll add a snap later.

The instructions & construction! Wow! The instructions are very clear and straight forward. Vogue classifies this pattern an easy, and it is! The beginner can do this (depending on fabric choice), especially if there are no major alterations needed. Most of all, I loved the construction, it's really beautiful inside and out! The front bodice has 2 lower edge pleats, vertical and horizontal bust darts. The horizontal buts dart is exposed so I stitched it in bubble gum pink so it could be seen! Another great feature is that all vertical seams are french seamed. So, no serger needed. Everything is enclosed! But because I microwaved this one, inside all of my French seam is a serged seam. Blame it on the fabric, more on that later.

Favorite things about the pattern? My favorite pattern surprise? A hong kong finished zipper! I was so happy to see this, and it was a breeze to finish since I just used this technique on my Minnie Penny pocket pant #3! I didn't use bias tape as suggested, I used my fashion fabric.

What scared me the most? Completing the French seam first on the center back seam and then inserting the zipper! I chose to follow the directions and it turned out very well. The key is to clip just above the finished French seam to the the zipper SA will freely lay flat. Because of my fabric type, I use a bit of fusible on the fashion fabric before I clipped so it didn't get hairy!

My Fashion Fabric: Oh my! After shopping my stash, I didn't find anything that really worked. So off to the store! Because of the uniqueness of the dress I wanted to push myself in the print department. Easy road: silky animal print...i almost went there! But after trying something out, I choose this quirky pretty print.

Every piece of fabric that I buy has to pass 2 HLT tests. 1) does it look good on me in the mirror? Yes, I'll either bring my own or search for one to use in the store. 2) Will it photograph well? Albeit flouresent, most fabric stores have adequate lighting to prevent trips and falls. But I'll whip out my iPhone and take a picture of it and look at it. Of course it's going to be bad because there no flash and cheap store lighting! But that's the point. If the fabric still looks great in those conditions, it's basically in the bag. (these are not the only HLT fabric test, there's touchy, feely, rub, rub stretch test & fabric content guessing, and a couple others)

This fabric has so many colors. As you can see I tried to swatch them, but I'm probably only at 80%. The comprehensive tones happen to be just right. It's interesting that some of the colors individually would look very bad with my skin tone. Yes, it's polyester, but I'm not mad. Sheer, light, flowy. The weight is much like the Sweet ruffles blouse, but the texture is smoother. It's raw edge can get very hairy, that's why I serged!

My contrast waistband is black poly crinkle from my stash. I haven't made the bow yet, but I might. And if I do it will be a pin, not sewn on. Sometimes I don't feel like a bow. Navy invisible zipper.

Changes I made: Only 1 for fitting. I cut 1.5 inches off the front bodice shoulder. Clearly, I don't have a super long torso, so I have to adjust.

Transition styling: added cardigan. This looks great with my navy polka dot peep toes!

Future pattern plans? Yes, I want to sew it again! This would make a really great LBD. I'm also thinking about knit possibilities, sans zipper. Or, just modifying the back so that there's full coverage.

Final thoughts: . I love it! It's different. I was thinking... Would I have given this dress a second look at the department store, even if I was snoop shopping? Would it have enough hanger appeal to bring me to the rack? Probably not. But it looks great on!

I was in this dress all day in the big apple! It's also great for wading in the humidity. Nothings worse in the summer weather than feeling glued into your clothes. This dress has a flirty style and a swingy hem. Oh, I also didn't topstitch my ruffles down as suggested. Not a time issue, just a design issue. It's just me, I think it takes away from the ruffle bounce! But even in the wind my ruffles didn't let me down.

HLT recommend additions: strapless undergarments! I might try placing undergarment modesty loops at the shoulder & at the back bodice...zipper level. I think that will work for those highly specialized undergarments.

It's a great Tracy Reese pattern, it's unique, fun and flirty. I'm glad that I pushed the edges of time a bit to get this dress done...I wouldn't have this pattern yet if I didn't BMV. BTW, the vogues are on sale at the 'J' this weekend. I wouldn't be wearing this dress if I waited for this sale! I'm even happier about my fabric choice!

Thanks for coming over!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


  1. LOve love LOVE this on you!!! I will take pics in mine tonight. I'm wear it to a wine tasting party! LOL

  2. I'm WEARING it lol. Not wear it lol.

  3. Your dress looks great! I love the fabric you chose. I made another dress by Tracy Reese and it has the same interior construction techniques. It looks so great for an unlined dress.

  4. Very pretty! Looks great on you!

  5. Love this dress and fabric! Color play is endless. I second the LBD idea.

  6. Wow! What a beautiful dress! It is so flattering. And what a lovely place you wore it to. I hadn't considered this pattern, but you've written such a great review, that I've added it to my list. It is appealing that they include all those lovely construction details in the pattern--French seams, Hong Kong finish zipper.

  7. Great Adrienne! I can't wait to see it! Thanks!

    Erica, I love the inside just as well! It's great design and construction! The best!

    Thanks Uma!

    Hi Kola Roth, that's well put! Color play! I love a cardigan and just about every one I have will work! Thanks!

    BeccA, yea the zipper is awesome! I'll post some more detailed pictures soon! I actually forgot some. Thanks got commenting.

  8. Sassy cute dress and great review. The print you selected works very well with the design. Two snaps up.

  9. Thanks C, I'm glad I took a risk with this print. It turned out better than expected!

  10. The dress is just lovely on you. It looks much better on you than the pattern cover. The print fabric is very unique.

  11. Beautiful dress - you look stunning!!

  12. I like the way you revamped the standard sewing pattern review template!

  13. Super duper cute! I love your fabric choice and that back is stunning!!! You've convinced me to pick up this pattern:)

  14. It's a lovely dress indeed and it looks great on you. Very cute!

  15. This is ABSOLUTELY stunning. Seriously. Seeing the first picture, I thought "OMG, I am so jealous that I don't have this dress in my closet". What store did you get the fabric from?! The colors are so great for fall. I like how you paired with a cardi. Ok, I obviously love the whole look, haha!

  16. Joyce in NC, Oh my! Thanks!

    Thanks for commenting Shannon!

    Kyle, yea I'm getting bore with the same old thing! I think that our reviews should reflect our own personality!

    Hi Victoria, Yes this dress does give good back but it's not in a tacky way. Thanks!

    Karin van D. Thanks for commenting!

    Thanks A Sewn Wardrobe. I'm glad you asked! would you believe... JoAnn Fabrics. I'm not kidding! The print reminds me of something from Antho, but I can't find a picture anywhere! Thanks for stopping by!

  17. Wow HLT what a dress! It did turn out really beautiful! (and beautiful on you too!) This is another great post...I am so interested in the Hong Kong finish process. Never done it and have seen it a few times know and really like it! Is it hard or time consuming to do??

  18. Beautiful dress and I love the fabric.

  19. This is really gorgeous! Last week, I had to go out and buy Vogue 1039 because of your pants, and now I'm going to have to go buy this Vogue pattern, too. You should be getting a commission from Vogue soon! I've never seen a zipper like that, so I'm excited to learn a new technique.

  20. Hi Myra! Thanks for coming over! About the Hong Kong finish, it's not a difficult technique to do. Basically it's bias tape sewn around the raw edges of the fabric. In my snoop shopping, Ive seen it quite frequently in casual jackets, where it substitutes for lining. I did this jacket a few years ago with the HK finish:http://www.flickr.com/photos/sewsew77/2814122071/in/set-72157606424721604/
    The inside:http://www.flickr.com/photos/sewsew77/2814870632/in/set-72157606424721604/

    And here's a brief tutorial! http://www.burdastyle.com/techniques/hong-kong-binding-seam-finish

    Aww, Thanks Peter! The fabric had to grow on me but I'm glad I went there!

    Ann, Wow Thanks! I'm sorry, I don't think the McCalls Pattern company heard you! Say it louder please! LOL! Great! That's so great that you learned something from my little blog. I love it! Here it is on my Minnit pants:http://b4thedoor.blogspot.com/2010/07/minnie-penny-pant-vogue-1039-3.html Thanks for commenting!

  21. Just gorgeous! What a great eye you have for fabric choice. Beautiful.

  22. Thanks for visiting my blog - and I really like yours. Wow, what a beautiful dress/pattern. Well done! I used to sew a lot (Vogue patterns were my fave). Now I can live vicariously through your sewing adventures! :)

  23. oooh! Thanks for posting this review. The dress looks great. I'm planning to make this dress in August. I just bought fabric yesterday (black and white print) but I like your idea about making a little black dress because I am intimidated about matching up the prints on all of the front and back seams.


  24. How have I not stumbled upon your blog before now?! That dress is such a winner!!

  25. Narcissaqtpie & Katherine H, thanks so much!

    A Bigger Closet, ditto! You blog is great too! It's inspirational! Thanks!

    Handmade by Carla, oohhh! I can't wait to see your version. I'll be watching!

    Well Amber! It's about time! Just kidding. I'm glad that you found my tiny tiny space in the web. Thaksfor commenting!

  26. Great dress. I love the fabric; and I have to agree with Joyce in NC, it looks much better on you. :)

  27. This dress is amazing. I have to make it! I loved your fabric colors because it transistions perfectly into fall. Great job and thanks for the tip on shortening the shoulder strap; I'll need to do that too.

  28. Thanks Val Gal! You'll absolutely love it!


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