Paintbox Vogue 1395

Vogue 1395

I think I mentioned a while ago that earlier this year the lovely Cloth House sent me a dreamy bundle of their Japanese cottons and crepes. I’ve been hoarding it all since January, anxious to pick the right project for every piece to ensure it’s used to its best potential. Eventually I had a breakthrough and cut into the first one, and this is the result.

Vogue 1395

It’s a Vogue 1395, a pattern I’ve had on my radar for a while after seeing Morgan and Lauren‘s gorgeous versions. I grabbed it in Minerva‘s half price Vogue sale and realised it’d be a perfect match for the Paintbox cotton because both remind me of Japanese kimono. Hence why I decided to get outside and pose next to our lovely baby Japanese maple tree, which always pops back into bloom every spring.

Vogue 1395

Dream fabric and a cool pattern: making this up was definitely pure sewing joy. I’ve come to realise that my favourite types of project are ones where the sewing itself is quite straightforward but the construction is a little leftfield, with a bit of trickery or challenge thrown in. 1395 definitely fulfils that with its double-layered back bodice, the over-layer of which wraps to the front to form the waist ties.

Vogue 1395

I’m not lying when I say this fabric is probably the nicest I’ve ever sewn with or worn. It’s got a slightly textured seersucker type of weave and while it took a press like a dream it barely creases with wear. Magic fabric! I’m even considering investing in the black colourway for another frock.

Vogue 1395
Vogue 1395

I made several flat pattern alterations based on how Big 4s always fit me. I cut a size below my measurements all over, shortened the bodice (perhaps half an inch too much in retrospect), took neckline wedges out, and cut the very smallest size through the shoulder. I still needed to shave more off the shoulder seam towards the edge because the sleeves were winging out weirdly, but overall I’m pleased with how the fit turned out. It’s supposed to be blousy and elasticated at the waist so you can’t really go too wrong.

Vogue 1395

For once I found the instructions were in a pretty sensible order so I did mostly follow them (except the weird direction to double-stitch every seam – I did French instead), but one change I made was to create a sort of facing piece for the ties. In the instructions they’re just roll-hemmed, but the back side of my fabric is pretty obvious looking so I wanted a neater finish that would only show the right side.

Vogue 1395
Vogue 1395

This was quite straightforward – I just traced off the shape of the tie, cutting it off around the side seam point, sewed it RS together to the overlay and turned to the outside. The rest of the overlay hem is then finished with bias binding.

Vogue 1395

Here’s another yummy detail, a gathered portion at the back neck that’s made by cutting a horizontal slit, seaming above and below it, then gathering and sewing the slit shut.

Vogue 1395

The whole back with the ties undone – the top layer is just caught in the waist seam at the centre back. I just love this dress as an object, I keep looking at it and petting it. Dork.

Vogue 1395

As you can probably tell, I’m digging this dress and I reckon I’ll make more 1395s with a few little tweaks: make the ties slimmer and longer because they feel kind of stumpy, try a curved scoop neckline, and try a more drapey fabric for a different effect – perhaps even a knit. You could even omit the top layer completely for a simple elastic-waist dress. Well on its way to becoming a TnT I think!

36 thoughts on “Paintbox Vogue 1395

  1. Manju

    Very nice Katie. This is on my “to sew” list this summer…doesn’t the pattern say line the skirt? Did you? That’s kind of what’s putting me off…

  2. Meg

    Love it! Great idea to line the ties. I started cutting mine out last week and noticed the skirt is lined, too. Did you line your skirt? I was thinking of skipping it.

    1. Katie Post author

      I didn’t line the skirt! Very easy to leave it off, and my fabric definitely didn’t need it. Look forward to seeing yours – we seem to be drawn to the same patterns a lot :)

  3. Katie

    This looks so cute! I actually made this last summer, but I probably needed to make similar adjustments as you did (shortening the bodice, cutting a smaller size) because mine came out a bit too baggy… Also I used rayon challis, and did the double sided ties but they’re sooo thick. You may have convinced me to give this another go, though (maybe I’ll do a fabric without an obvious back side though)

  4. crab&bee

    Ooh yay! I love how this turned out – I would have only thought to make it in draping fabrics but the cotton looks great! I was actually trying mine on again yesterday and thinking I’d like to make it again…

  5. Ginger

    This is the perfect pattern for this fabric! It looks fantastic! I agree that longer ties could be pretty on your next version. Can’t wait to see it!

  6. Susanne

    I love it! I made mine in a knit – not too stretchy and had ZERO recovery so it was obviously not suitable for a t-shirt or leggings or other stretchy garment. On my next one (rayon challis, maybe?) I’ll probably try some of your mods, because, I did a lot of kind of feeble alterations on the final garment.

    1. Katie Post author

      Good to hear someone else tried it in a knit. I usually do a mix of pre-emptive and as-I-sew kind of alterations.

  7. Veronica Darling

    What lovely fabric! I’m always interested in V-Neck dresses… but I can’t see how you faced the back piece… and the front pieces look like they are bias binding before they’re sewn together! VERY INTERESTING!

    1. Katie Post author

      The back neckline is finished by being joined to the under-bodice. There’s all sorts of fun construction trickery at work!

      1. Edurne

        oh yes! Awesome species, amazing colors. I finally caved and bought one this morning, hubby’s bday is next Sunday and couldn’t think of anything better. Maybe finishing Jedediah pants for him…. ??

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