I am freshly back from an amazing, whirlwind trip to San Francisco to visit Simon; I spent most of my time getting to know his new neighbourhood and all of the restaurants and bakeries nearby, then we headed off to Yosemite for a few days of some seriously strenuous hiking, before returning back to the city to sing our hearts out at a Gaslight Anthem gig, and to also squeeze in an absolutely necessary trip to Britex Fabrics…! All in, I had the best time and am already counting down until I can head back out there again for a trip ♥️ I managed to get some photos of my newest #MinervaMake while at the incredibly windy beach (apologies for the grimacing in these photos, I was more focused on trying not to be blown away!) — head over to Minerva to read up my blog post or scroll down for more details and photos.
Now, Vogue 9239 has got some seriously questionable fabric choices for the illustration and the main garment photo hurts my eyes in all its hideousness; luckily, I had read Elisenne’s positive review of this pattern and View D in particular, so I had no qualms requesting a copy from Minerva to review as part of their #SewnWithVogue challenge this September! V9239 has a choice of six fully-lined dresses included; the princess-seam bodice is very fitted, with an elegant bateau neckline constructed with front and back yokes that form cap sleeves, and there are two additional sleeve options and the choice of a fitted slim skirt or a full panelled skirt. There are pockets included and it is one of Vogue’s Custom Fit ranges, which means you get separate bodice pieces from a dressmakers A-cup to D-cup. There are a variety of stable woven fabrics recommended, including eyelet/broderie anglaise/lace, linen, and sateen.
Once you look past the deeply underwhelming stripes for the illustration of View D, you can start to imagine it as a classic 1950s Dior silhouette, with the nipped-in waist and circle skirt. This is a silhouette I really gravitate towards as a general rule and I was tempted to track down some quality black sateen to create the quintessential LBD. However, when I stumbled on this bright orange textured jacquard, it just called out to me to use it for V9239 — vintage silhouette, meet LOUD fabric!
I cut a size 12 and used the D-cup bodice piece, as I have a full 4″ of difference between my high bust measurement and my full bust measurement. I found the fit at the waist pretty snug (especially during my week of eating all the delicious food I could find in San Francisco 😅), but I am super pleased with the fit through the bust with the princess seams. Looking at my pictures, I should have taken some excess out of the neckline, as it isn’t sitting flush to my upper chest. I found this dress came together fairly swiftly, but I did take some shortcuts to speed up the process; I topstitched around the armholes and neckline, and I left the skirt unlined out of necessity, as I had used my few remaining scraps of gingham seersucker leftover from my Hannah wrap dress for the bodice lining.
While I am really proud of my sewing on this dress (including the neatest invisible zip and princess seams I have ever done!), I am not sure how often I will wear it… I usually prefer dresses with sleeves, as I find they add some balance to my figure, and I generally avoid wearing polyester day-to-day, preferring natural fibres wherever possible. I wouldn’t call this garment an unequivocal hit, and it will probably end up as a summer party dress that I wear on rare occasions. And that’s ok! Sometimes a dressmaking project doesn’t quite hit the mark and I think it’s important to consider why the finished garment didn’t work in order to avoid repeating the same mistakes. Despite my mixed feelings about this finished dress, I really do adore the vivid orange shade of the fabric. I guess the moral of this dress is to continue to dress in the same colour scheme as the nearest landmark…? 😄
Size 6 – 22
Full Bust: 30½″-44″