The “Catalina Keeper” Dress
I made this dress just before taking off for Southern California to visit with family. Our first stop was to the little island of Catalina. Two of my daughters happened to be working there, so we were given the royal treatment and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We stayed in the quaint little harbor town of Avalon where we enjoyed great food at C.C. Gallighars (a fine restaurant and gift shop), playing volleyball on the beach, pampering ourselves with ice tea while some of us snorkeled at Descaso Beach, and going out on a catamaran to see the flying fish in the evening. Yes, fish do fly and it was amazing to see. In between all of our activities, I managed to get my family to snap a few pictures of me in my tribute to the red, white, and blue challenge. I really enjoyed making this dress. The bodice is lined with the same fabric, and was easy to turn through the neck straps. Now that I have a serger and a new one as of last week, I skip the directions for tacking down the facing. I just serge the bodice/skirt seam and also serge the lining/facing at about 5/8, then I only tack it down at the side and/or front and back seams. It’s so much faster and it allows the different fabrics to adjust without tugging or pulling. All-in-all it is a very clean finished look. Before I tacked it down for this dress, I tried it on and found it a bit loose. Since I had already put the side zipper in, I had to pick it out and adjust the sides so that the fit would be better. I am still considering putting some stays in the sides to help keep the back bodice up. If I make this again, I would defineitly add some interfacing to the back bodice, because fabric tends to stretch with wear and this needs to fit snuggly.
The hem was quickly serged and then I sewed white trim to it. I folded it to the inside and then topped stitched it. That was also something that the directions had you do a different and more time-consuming way. And finally, let me just add that Sergers are amazing! They save so much time and finish the seams so nicely. Plus, they open up a whole new world of fabric choices to play around with. If you don’t have one, you should put it on your wish list.
Fabric: Red and white print cotton from Beverlys
Pattern: Retro Butterick B5214
Notions: invisible zipper
Time to complete: One hour to cut and a day to make it
First worn:June 25 on Catalina Island
Wear again? Yes!
Total price: $15.00