The Cocktail Hour with McCall’s & The Eve Appeal

Finally! The cat is out of this metaphorical handmade bag. I reveal my contribution to McCall’s ‘The Cocktail Hour’ – Vogue Patterns 1484. And isn’t she just darling.

This dress has been a seriously long time in the making. It was way back in darkest February (I was still pregnant at the time) that I chose this pattern as I hopped aboard the list of bloggers taking part in ‘The Cocktail Hour’. This is one big happy social sew-along involving 20 Vogue Patterns. McCall’s then donate to the fabulous charity The Eve Appeal for every pattern sold. Great idea right?

I first heard about The Eve Appeal when I took part in the Big Vintage Sew-Along last year (see blog post here). They are a fantastic charity, raising money for research into/awareness of lady cancers. I used to work in the Pathology Department at the hospital in Cambridge, so have seen myself the awful amount of horrible cancers that get diagnosed. I also had a bit of a scare myself a few years ago – so a big shout out is needed to this ace charity!

Anyway…. to the dress.

I chose Vogue 1484 as my pattern to tackle. I immediately fell in love with the collar on this – as you know, I’m a fan of a shirt dress. Who isn’t?

Before getting started on this make, I had already seen that the gorgeous girlies Gabby (Gabberdashery) and Nina (Thumblenina) had also made this pattern for The Cocktail Hour. So thanks to them, I already knew that this pattern came up very large, and that the yoke needed some altering. Thanks both – your beautiful dresses and blog posts helped me no end.

I had been eyeing up the fabric from Fabric Godmother for quite some time – a crepe backed satin. They have them in a selection of gorgeous colours, and I love the idea of being able to use both sides of the fabric. So I decided it would look really effective with the princess seams on this dress. Sold.

This make definitely had me kicking myself for choosing a more difficult pattern mid-way through. Probably had something to do with a combination of chiffon… sleeves… and binding…. ah! To be fair, I did choose some pretty slippery fabrics to work with. So this was entirely my own fault!

For the sheer yoke I ended up using a chiffon fabric from John Lewis. The pattern says to use organza, but I couldn’t find any when I went shopping, so opted for chiffon instead. Does anyone know the difference between organza and chiffon?! All I know is that CHIFFON IS NOT MY FRIEND!

I made a toile of the dress to start with – a great decision as it turned out. I ended up also altering the bust (which seemed to come up quite large too), and also took some of the volume from the yoke (as well as shortening the yoke too).

I won’t go into too many details on this make. Mostly because you will tire of me moaning about my fabric slippery choices! The satin was slinky AF and the chiffon was all chiffoney and annoying. My main saving grace was using starch to help stiffen the chiffon before cutting and sewing. But it was still insanely hard to sew. Definitely needed my head in the game on this one, and a nice new sharp needle on my machine.

The part I found most difficult was definitely inserting the sleeves + binding. Ahhhhh… big headache! I also didn’t factor in that I had shortened the yoke, so this obviously made the armholes smaller. No biggie as I don’t have massive arms/shoulders anyway (although my mummy muscles are impressive, if I say so myself).

Having moaned my way through this blog post, I have to say I am so happy with the end result. It is a little out of my comfort zone on the glamour stakes… but I think I may have just pulled it off! I love the mix of shiny and matte along the princess seams. Dare I say it, I even like the wretched chiffon yoke. But I think me and chiffon need to go on a break. I wish not to see it again for quite some time.

Pattern – Vogue Patterns 1484

Fabric – Crepe backed satin from Fabric Godmother,

and chiffon from John Lewis

Size made – 8

Giveaway time!

I will be running a giveaway to win a V1484 pattern on my Instagram – so make sure you follow me @gingerthreadgrl to find out more info!

Getting involved

If you want to get involved with The Cocktail Hour, then head on over to Sew Direct to browse the 20 Vogue Patterns and choose your favourite to buy. Then share your creation with the hashtag #sipandsew. Simples!

Disclaimer – This pattern was kindly sent to me free of charge by McCall’s, for taking part in The Cocktail Hour Blogger Tour.

The Blogger Tour

Keep your eyes peeled on the remaining bloggers taking part in The Cocktail Hour:

3rd November – A Stitching Odyssey, Marie Koupparis

10th November – Randomly Happy, Elena Rosa Brown

17th November – Sew for Victory, Laura Clarke

24th November – Ooobop, Janene Spencer



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