V8380 Dress: The Caged Bird Sings

So, um, whoops! I’ve had this post sitting in my drafts folder since August 12th. If you follow The Sew Weekly you may have already seen my dress over there. It was featured too! I was “Tuesday” in the “Yellow” challenge. 🙂

I first saw this Vogue 8380 dress pattern (view B) when Sunni from A Fashionable Stitch shared her version. I thought it was so cute with the little bow at the top! I bought this pretty cotton lawn last summer at G Street Fabrics during a trip to D.C. because I loved the color and the print, not really thinking how the color would look on me.

I was determined to finish this dress just in time for my New England road trip, and finish it I did! This required staying up past midnight the morning I left and packing afterward. Staying up past midnight on a Friday night – ohhh yeah, living dangerously.

I’m not sure how this neckline (or the color for that matter) looks on me, but overall I’m happy with it. I feel very “New England” in it, especially in front of this schooner in Portland, Maine! The dress is gathered above and below the waistline and closes with an invisible zip at the side seam. The tie at the top brings it all together. It’s actually a very easy dress to make and to adjust, can’t complain there.

I ended up lining the dress even though the pattern doesn’t call for it. The birdy cotton lawn is sheer and while I thought about underlining it, I figured lining would be the cleanest look for the inside. I took the time to hide the zipper between the layers, a technique I can’t resist these days. Thankfully, my most recent Sewaholic Cambie dress (the Muddy Waters dress) gave me good practice with how best to add lining to a dress with an invisible zip.

I feel like the title of this post/dress is kind of obvious, but what else could I call it? I mean, look at that print! Birds and cages with the cage doors open. Every time I saw this fabric in my stash I dreamed of the day I would make it into something and, yes, call it the “Caged Bird Sings” dress (so clever and yet *so* unoriginal) after the Maya Angelou novel. I think it definitely looks better with a summer tan, but since summer is the only time of the year I plan to wear it, I think I’m good to go there. 🙂

Ahoy, she says! (Can you say “ahoy” if you’re not even physically on the boat?) Please note how I can’t even really see that far into the distance. It was really foggy that morning, but we took a tour on the schooner anyway to explore Casco Bay, apparently also known as the Bermuda Triangle some days. Luckily we made it back okay and even got to see some of the bay after the fog decided to be kind and clear on out of there.

And here’s a little up close and personal with the print. It’s upside down obviously, but it gives you a better look at the cute design. The fabric feels so soft and I used an even softer pale yellow voile for the lining that I picked up from Paron here in NYC. I’ve come to the realization that the lining should be the most comfortable part of the dress given that it’s up against your skin the entire time you’re wearing the darn thing. Would you agree?

Checklist: Things to Fix:

  • The hem. Needs some help. 🙂
  • I’m going to either add small darts at the neckline or take some fabric out from the side seams. It’s a little too large up top and it’s forced me to tie the bow as tight as I could, which in turn affects the look of the neckline. Not a big deal, but I’d still like to fix that!
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3 thoughts on “V8380 Dress: The Caged Bird Sings

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