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The Yellow Dress: McCall's 8383

Updated: Jul 5

My family and I went on vacation to Cape Coral, Florida in the beginning of June, like we have done so many summers over the last few years. As usual, I decided to sew a few things to bring on the trip with me. This fitted yellow dress is one of them. If you have been following me for quite some time you may have gotten a sense of my style. I love dresses, but the type of dress you would usually find me in over the last two years are loose fitting, flowy dresses. Body positivity is a real thing, and something I have struggled with, especially lately. Since I have been battling fibroids and endometriosis, the weight gain has been difficult to manage, especially in the abdominal area. Well, I am just plain tired of overthinking about everything I put on. So ya girl stepped out of the box and sewed something that hugs my curves like nothing I've ever worn, put on a body shaper, and felt fabulous in her skin, and this beautiful new dress. It was the perfect night out dress for a date night with the hubby. Now, let’s get into the details shall we?

Fabric Used

I used this beautiful mineral yellow fabric from Jo-Ann. Many of you will relate to how I found this fabric. I went into Jo-ann to purchase a few notions, and decided to see that else they had in their inventory. I found this fabric just looking at me say, "buy me please."I am Sure you guys understand. Lol! The mineral yellow fabric has a width of 58 inches, and contains 85% polyester and 15% spandex. It has a light-mid weight knit that features a 4 way stretch, and is perfect for dresses and tops, as well as leggings. I absolutely love the soft drape. It feels great on the skin.

Sewing Tip

1. When cutting the pattern, maker sure the greatest amount of stretch is going around your body.

2. Use jersey needles when sewing with this knit. Though universal needles can sew stretchy fabrics, their slightly rounded tip is best used on wovens and sturdy knits.

3. While sewing this dress, I sewed stay tape on the shoulder seams, and placed adhesive hem tape along the opening of the slit before I created the narrow hem to close the raw edges of the slit.This is done to keep your garment from stretching and losing its shape over time.

Pattern Used/ Size Cut

I used McCalls 8383 dress pattern. It is a sleeveless open back dress with two views, a scoop or crew neckline. The dress comes in two lengths and has front seam that starts from the waist then opens up into a slit. I sewed view B with the crew crew neckline and longer length. This pattern goes up to a size 26, and I cut a size 14, but stitched the bodice close to a 1" stitch and from the waist down I sewed the recommended 5/8". I am a bit smaller in the upper area, so I often have to go between sizes when I sew.

Final Thoughts

I absolutely love this pattern. Even though it is not what I usually sew or wear, I love this dress and the way it made me feel. I feel beautiful, sexy, and confident in it. It definitely changed how I view my style.

An error that I made on this dress was cutting the armhole too big. I cut it at a 14, but I should've cut a 12 in that area. For those whom have not been working with McCalls patterns for as long as I have, do know that when cutting you may have to cut two sizes smaller than the recommended size on the back of the envelope. The envelope told me to cut a between a size 16 and 18, but due to my experience with the “Big Four,” I know that it is always wise to look at the sizing on the pattern paper, not the envelope. Other than sizing, I had not issues with this pattern. I love the neckline and design of the slit in the dress. I was worried at how low the opening in the back would be, but it turned out to be the perfect size and centered perfectly in the back. The instructions were very understandable, and I always love that they include definitions of sewing terms used in the instructions for beginners or people who may not be familiar with some sewing terms. Please enjoy the photos below. They were taken by my husband. He is not a professional, but he does a good job.

Thank you all for taking the time to read my blog, I truly appreciate it. I hope that this blog was informative and that you learned something that will help you in your next sewing project. Comment below and let me know your thoughts or questions. Also, please make sure to subscribe to my blog for monthly newsletters and alerts when new blog posts go live.

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