Santa Fe Dress
I always want to feel confident in the clothes I'm wearing (hence this blog). Most of my hand made garments help me feel confident -- they skim my body, the sleeves and pant legs are long enough, they don't ride up or pull down, you get the picture. I have a few items that REALLY help me feel confident. One of those items is the Nancy Zieman Santa Fe Dress. The folds of the bodice minimize my bust, and the rest of the dress falls beautifully. My first version was in a black slinky knit purchased from Nancy's Notions. It is great for traveling, but the fabric is slippery and thick. I made this second version with a bamboo knit from Fabric Depot in Portland, Oregon. It is also available from The Sewing Workshop online. The fabric is a lightweight jersey, which made the front folds much easier. For both versions, I slashed and spread the bust pattern piece horizontally so the under bust seam would hit at the right spot.
During tissue-fitting the pattern, I could tell the upper front pieces weren’t long enough to reach to the bottom of my bust. To rectify the situation, I slashed the upper front pieces horizontally below the armhole, and spread 1/2” (sorry no pictures).
The instructions were great and the pattern sewed up quickly. The only challenge was sewing through the NINE layers of fabric that pile up at the center front. Nancy’s slinky knit is not thick, but there was still a lot of width in the center pile-up. I would recommend not using a beefy knit for this dress.
But…..Those nine layers make for a gorgeous center front that works for a large or small bust. I can’t wait to make more Santa Fe dresses, and to start making Santa Fe tops!