So here it is... my finished Scirocco dress pattern from Figgy's. Hooray!
I meant to follow the pattern exactly as written because I think the design is perfect as is, but it was not meant to be. First, my girl requested that I make the twisted back with contrasting fabrics, which I totally love. Then, after completing the bodice it became clear that even though I traced the pattern in a size 6/7 with a 8/9 length, it was not even close to long enough to cover my string bean's bellybutton. Luckily I had enough black piping and blue leopard print to make a cumberbund-style addition to sew in between the bodice and the ruffled skirt. I treated the top of the back leopard fabric piece as the top ruffle, and inserted the elastic and attached it to the bodice as instructed in the pattern. The main variation I made was in adding piping to the top front leopard piece, and all around the bottom of the leopard panel before attaching the skirt ruffles. Adding piping is simple and it creates a very finished, professional look. I use a zipper foot to sew piping to my cotton fabric without any added stabilizers, but there are many different ways to go about piping a garment. If you want a full tutorial to teach you how to do it, I recommend the piping tutes over at The Cottage Home, and Make It Love It. Both present simple ways to add piping to nearly any sewing project.
Now about the Scirocco sewing pattern... I want to start by saying that overall, I find that Figgy's Patterns are easy to follow. As is clear by the sheer number of Figgy's patterns that I choose to use, I'm a huge fan. Nevertheless, even using this photo tutorial for the bodice on this Scirocco dress, I found myself utterly confused regarding shoulder finishing on the Scirocco. I'm not sure exactly where my problem lay, but every time I tried to follow the tutorial or pattern I ended up a very frustrated pregnant lady with a seam ripper in her hand and steam coming out of her ears. After about an hour of this I let my sewing instincts take over and topstiched the neck and armholes. Luckily I like the results, and I don't think the topstitching takes away from the overall design. The rest of the dress was a breeze, and I would use the pattern again without hesitation. Maybe next time the instructions will click with my brain, who knows?
Fabric was chosen by my daughter. The shiny blue dot is a very old Alexander Henry print from my stash, and the blue leopard is Anna Maria Horner's Spotted in the Crowd in Elizabeth from her awesome LouLouthi collection. We love black and blue together. There's just something edgy about it, right? Now all this girl needs is a pair of cute shoes and she's ready to party.