Peplum Dress

I am feeling exceedingly tired this evening as a result of the most wonderful wedding of one of my lovely pals yesterday. A brilliant day but it was also a sewing deadline for me!

I have realised that while I do really like sewing, it is largely pointless in some cases because clothes are so cheap to buy (which really annoys me as it leads to a wasteful society, but I have already mentioned this so will not bore you today!). When fabric is fairly pricey to buy, it really doesn’t often work out much cheaper if you make a little skirt or top to wear on a daily basis. Therefore, I had an excellent idea…if I make myself the items that cost me the most to buy, I could cut some costs and it would all be worth it! In addition, buying smart dresses for weddings hugely stresses me out and I end up making an emergency purchase from Coast / Reiss etc. the day before and then having a panic that I will be in the same outfit as somebody else who is slimmer / prettier etc.!!

So that is where this Peplum Dress comes in. In about January, I thought I would make my dress for Jess and Tris’ wedding in July…and obviously I finished hemming it yesterday morning, the day of the wedding. In my defence, I have had exams and holidays in the way, and just general life busy-ness…

The dress is from the new book ‘The Great British Sewing Bee: From Stitch to Style’. As with their previous book, I have issues with it. The projects are all really cool and things I would like to make, however, the book really has not been proof read properly and I seem to find some sort of mistake in every pattern. It is also not that simple to follow, unlike some of my other sewing books.

Anyway…it turns out that the Peplum Dress is quite hard, and is definitely the hardest thing I have ever made. I think I need to sew something slightly more simple to rekindle my love of sewing, as it has really tried my patience and I have put my sewing machine away with no intention of bringing it out again for a few months!

My dining table of fabric with an interesting selection of weights in use

The concept is easy, but it is fiddly and takes a lot of time. I cut out all my fabric, then sewed darts in the bust and the skirt. The bodice is then sewn together, as are the skirt panels. The peplum is very easy – it is essentially just some extra fabric that you then sew inbetween when you attach the skirt to the bodice.

Essential ironing of the sleeves before hemming them

I had a COMPLETE nightmare with the concealed zip and, despite deciding I would tackle it properly with an invisible zipper foot, ended up having to unpick the whole thing and then sewing it my own method that I always use but means the zip is not perfect. I would love advice if anyone can help me with this please!

The sleeves on this dress also really caused me issues and managed to ruin the dress. I really could not understand the instructions in the book (I think they are wrong) and the result was a sleeve that only a baby’s arm would fit through…or maybe someone who doesn’t play any sport so has thinner upper arms than me (or just eats less). Then, when I was setting them in, they managed to pull the neckline of the dress out of shape. For me, that has ruined the dress but I don’t think other people noticed.

Setting in the nightmare sleeves

My final issue is that I obviously never measure myself up properly (I am a fairly standard size 10) but something clearly wasn’t right as it is a little tight on the derriere…I took a spare dress just in case it split! No need, but I was marginally panicked!

The back last weekend, before hemming. (Yes, that is Top Gear in the background)

Anyway, all in all, the wedding was stunning, and the dress worked out! I’m exhausted, but happy… LSx




4 thoughts on “Peplum Dress

  1. You look absolutely stunning and the dress really suits you!
    Zips are really hard. I love the recent trend for exposed zips which means you can sew them in flat and with quite a lot of it showing.


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