The “Union Jack Peek-a-Boo Dress” | Debi Fry
Fabric: 2.5 metres red gabardine £20 from Edinburgh Fabrics, 0.5 metres union jack silk lining material £2.50
Pattern: McCall 3678
Year: c. 1940
Notions: 10 buttons from Edinburgh Fabrics £5
Time to complete: 12 hours
Wear again? YES!!!! I love it!!!!
Total Cost: ~£27.50
I've been waiting for the perfect opportunity to sew up this amazing pattern! And it came in the form of the UK Sew Weekly meet-up that happened this last Saturday in London!
It all started when I found this amazing union jack lining material in my local fabric store. Originally I had thought of making up a 1940's shirtwaist dress in the material. The more I thought about it, the more doubtful I became about using it as the main material for a dress BUT I did want to use it somehow! I pulled out all the potential patterns from my stash and asked David to pick one! He picked one of my favourites–this amazing hooded button front dress. David also picked out the fabric at the store. I was originally thinking blue but they didn't have anything that matched the union jack royal blue and then we spotted this red gabardine and it was perfect!
I had a plan! The only problem?? You may recall that I finished and posted my last sew weekly dress in the wee hours of Friday morning and the meet-up was on Saturday (I had to catch a 6am train) and I still had to work on Friday! Eeep! Well, I started right away after finishing my workday on Friday and get this, I sewed all night long!!! I made my train in the morning and was still hemming the dress, tacking the facing and sewing on the buttons on the train! hehehe! I think it was the excitement of the dress coupled with the excitement of meeting everyone that kept me going!
The dress was very straightforward to sew up. It's basically a princess seamed dress with pleated sleeve caps and straight sleeves. The hood is just two seams and the lining is just the facing of the hood and the pockets. This was my first time sewing with princess seams and I really like it! It makes it easy to fit the dress and is such a nice effect! Sewing with gabardine was also a nice change from last week's loose weave fabric–gabardine is super stable and yet not too heavy!
I absolutely love the back of the dress and how it drapes! It's super comfortable!!! Initially I was very nervous about all the buttons down the front, but I just made sure to mark them really well (all 1 inch from the edge). In addition, the pattern pieces have the buttonhole placement marks on them–so that helped!
The only changes I made to the pattern were to take 1 inch off the length from the bodice and 1.5 inches off the length at the midway point in the skirt. I also lengthened the sleeves by adding sleeve cuffs.
The hood is one of my favourite parts of the dress! You can't really tell it's a union jack flag fabric from far-away. It's a fun print and makes me smile everytime I see it (and will always remind me of our first meet-up!)
The photos below were taken by Sofia on the day of the meet-up…I love the colouring her camera gives to the photos:
The UK Sew Weekly meet-up was so much fun! It was really the most perfect day ever. Read more details about the day on my blog posts here and here and a big thank you for the photos from the ladies at the meet-up and there are loads more photos on the Sew Weekly Sewing Circle! We also met-up with Charlotte who blogs over at Tuppence Ha'Penny and who also contributed to the Sew Weekly Common Thread Project at the fabric stores: