Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Vogue 1317 - Gray wool knit dress w/ black topstitching

When this Chado Ralph Rucci designer pattern first came out in 2012, I snapped it up faster then lightning. Interesting seam lines and loads of topstitching? It practically had my name written on it. Of course it had to marinate in my stash for a few years while I mulled over the changes I wanted to make.


The first two givens were to eliminate the front ties and raise the neckline slit. I don't find extra bulk around my waist to be flattering. Also I wanted to carve out the neckline a bit because of my phobia of feeling choked. I'm not a pockets-in-the-dress lover so I left those off. I lengthened the bodice 1 3/8" for a long torso adjustment. (Can that be a thing, like the FBA? If I start typing LTA, will y'all know what I'm talking about?) Because of the added length at the waist, I didn't have to lengthen the bottom at all.


I liked the length of the sleeves on the designer example but I noticed that other people who made this pattern had sleeves a little above their wrists. I cut my sleeves 2.5" shorter and used the sleeve facings from a bigger size. The fabric is a beefy wool knit I've had in my stash for years. I actually used a bit of it for this colorblocked dress I made 3 years ago, so was on fabric fumes for this dress. (I got rid of that dress years ago during a closet purge. It was too short and always made me feel self conscious.)


I cut the size 10 for the bodice, tapered out to a 12 at the waist and hips, and got a very nice fit. This is my usual Vogue sizing, but I did use a knit. The fabric suggestions for this dress are doubleknit and synthetic suede. I don't know how much arm mobility you would have with a woven fabric, but you'd definitely need to go up a size.


When I got the top finished and tried it on my dressform, it was really roomy under the bust and around the front waist seaming. On the original, the ties pull this area in for a snugger fit. As I had left the ties off my dress, I chose to add darts. I didn't have enough fabric to re-cut the front waist inset to make it smaller, so I put a seam down the center. It's not topstitched and blends in pretty well. I also had to add a seam down the center front of the underskirt, which you can't see from the outside. The center front skirt was trimmed on the sides. Each dart eliminated 3/4" of fabric, so I took a total 1.5" off the dress diameter.


I love how the sleeves turned out! The fabric has striations in it, which meet in in Vs along the outer seams.


This design has a TON of topstitching. The seams have a double line and all the openings have triple. I used heavy duty thread and a longer stitch length to make them really pop.


Another thing I loved about this pattern was all the facings included. However, since I had such limited fabric, I was forced to use a different fabric for them. I chose a black ponte knit to match the black topstitching. I think it looks awesome peeking out at the sleeve slits that flip up a little when it's being worn, and at the hemline when I'm walking. I trimmed each facing close to the 3rd line of topstitching.


Dressform pictures:


I had a lot of fun making this garment, but I did get really tired of topstitching towards the end. I have decided I love Chado Ralph Rucci and have been scouring Ebay and Etsy for some of his discontinued patterns. They are mostly all challenging with interesting design details. (Some of his shapes are a little beyond my comfort zone though, like that new coat that everyone on the internet went gaga for.) I adore his newest pattern with the complicated jacket design. Who knows when I'll get around to it though.

84 comments:

  1. Love your dress! It is beautiful on the outside, and the inside is really interesting with the black facings... Incredible job with the topstitching!

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  2. I love this dress, it is stunning both inside and out. You look great.

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  3. Just stunning! You cracked me up with the "LTA"---that is my issue with every dress or jacket as well. So sorry you gave up on that Burda colorblocked dress- I loved your version!

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    1. Thanks Texas Urban! The zipper on the back of that dress also hit me in the back of the leg every time I took a step. It just wasn't an enjoyable wearing experience. Maybe someday I'll make another one in a solid color.

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  4. One thing--is this perhaps Vogue 1317 not 1370?

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    1. You are correct! Thanks for bringing that to my attention. I've corrected it.

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  5. This dress is so beautiful on you I immediately went to Ebay and bought the pattern. Thanks for the inspiration!

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    1. Thanks Katboulder! I hope you didn't pay too much on Ebay. I'm pretty sure it's still for sale from Vogue. I was referring to some of Ralph Rucci's other patterns that are now OOP.

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  6. This dress is absolutely gorgeous, Amanda! You did such an amazing job with all that top-stitching. It's so enviably straight and tidy! I love it.

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    1. Thanks Mary! My eyes were pretty crossed by the end, lol.

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  7. Stunning, Amanda! Another one that's going on our fan gallery.

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  8. What a wonderful dress! Wow-your skills are amazing. Love it.

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  9. You look great.
    I also love his patterns and have been buying them all along.
    He does not design for his house any more. I don't remember if the spring Vogue patterns are his last true design or the fall Vogues were his last.

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    1. Thank you Lisa! I, too, read somewhere that he stopped designing for his label. That must be so weird, to sell the company that is named after you. Hopefully they will continue with his innovative designs aesthetic.

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  10. So beautiful! I love the topstitching and the black facing. Such impeccable work! Gorgeous!!

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  11. Hello, Amanda! Wow, I want your dress!!! The details are amazing, and your work, absolutely perfect. It is always a joy to read your posts

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  12. Such exquisite work inside and out Amanda! Love the black facing!

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  13. Your work always looks impeccable! So classy.

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  14. I never would have looked twice at this pattern with that bow on the front, but I love your version. Such gorgeous fabric with such interesting seaming - I love it!

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    1. Thanks Gina! Looking at the blackline drawing helped me picture the dress without the bow. I'm sure it would look great on a tall/super thin person with a bit more bust then me, but that is just not my body type.

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  15. Wow, this is gorgeous. The top stitching must have got quite tedious, but it was definitely worth the effort as the finished result is fabulous! Your version is so much nicer than the original as well.

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    1. Yes, it got really tedious. I was topstitching for days. It didn't put me off topstitching, though, because my current project has it as well. Thanks Sam!

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  16. You amaze me! Lovely dress and I hope you get around to the new Rucci pattern soon - don't know many who pull it off but you certainly can :)

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    1. Thanks Sarah! I took a look at the directions for that new Rucci jacket and they are CHALLENGING! I honestly wasn't going to purchase the pattern but I watched that fashion show on youtube and loved the monochromatic outfits of the same design. The black and orange color combo put me off at first.

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  17. Yes Rucci is a perfect designer for you - challenging and tailored styles! Your latest dress confirms this. Hope your reconsider sewing up Rucci's latest coat. Karen

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    1. Oh that coat. It's just not practical for me. The bell sleeves would be in my way and the high neckline I don't find comfortable. Some of the details are pretty but I can't figure out how to change it to suit my needs. Plus there are a bunch of Marfy coat patterns that I love so much more. Thanks for your comment!

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  18. Wow! What a stunning dress! This is such an interesting pattern, and I really love how you made it wearable with the grey wool. Definitely looks like a challenging sew, but you definitely have the skills to pull it off with flair!

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  19. Wow, this looks so cool! Your topstitching looks awesome- it really elevates the dress and makes it look special!

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  20. How nice! And a lot of work. But it is so nice, I'm serious.
    The topstitching looks great. I really love it.
    Love, Wilma

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  21. Love how the topstitching highlights the very interesting seams. i am impressed that they didn't stretch them out or cause ripples!

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    1. The trick is the use of wool and a beefy fabric with good recovery. Thanks Petiterepublic!

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  22. What a beautiful version of this dress you have made! I really love the Ralph Rucci Vogue patterns--such interesting details--and I have this one but have not dared to make it up yet. So very glad to see how yours came out.

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  23. I bought this pattern but I haven't seen it on anyone yet. Love your paired down version. You've convinced me to sew it for my calendar of dresses.

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    1. It's been made several times over the years, and I think there are a few reviews at patternreview.com. Thanks Gail!

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  24. Very classy like always Amanda!

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  25. Wow, this dress looks amazing on you - I love the way the darts turned out in this fabric, and your beautiful neat top stitching and those peeks of black ponte on the inside look so good.

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  26. Gorgeous dress - the top stitching is perfection, but that's what puts me off making this...you have far more patience!

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    1. Well, I do like the challenge of it. But I also like handsewing which many don't. Guess I'm just odd that way. Thanks Manju!

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  27. And this is why it's smart to stash those classic fabrics - they make up into such nice clothes. I love the black facings & topstitching.

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  28. My goodness, it's gorgeous! Great job!

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  29. As usual, you do a simply outstanding job! Your garments always have couture details, just amazing! And to top it off, your figure is outstanding, you would not know you had 4 children!! Thanks for inspiring us all. God Bless.

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  30. Beautiful dress! Love all of the details.

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  31. Your version of this dress looks so much more wearable than other versions I have seed. It sounds like it was a ton of work, but the results were worth it; beautiful and your workmanship is tip top as usual.

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  32. Impressive work! Congrats on a lovely finish!

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  33. Oh this is so lovely, dresses with this kind of topstitching and seam detail are perfectly suited to your impeccable sewing style. You were really smart to add the extra darts in place of the sash, I recently made this in a ponte also (not reviewed yet as I can't get decent photos which says everything really) and didn't have enough for the sash and the fit is a bit disappointing because of it. Maybe I'll have to get the thread picker out, not a fun job in topstitched ponte!

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    1. I hope you do add some darts to get a fit you like better, because this dress is a lot of work and I would hate for you not to wear yours. If you put a seam down the middle of the front band, it shouldn't be too much work to add the darts and snug it up some. Thanks Allison!

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  34. wow! your technique is amazing. I love the little details! And it looks fantastic on you!!! Vita
    http://sewyourownwardrobeforayearchallenge.blogspot.com

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  35. The top stitching and the inside finish is impeccable. Beautiful work.

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  36. Such a brilliant piece of work. Top stitching is worth it.

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  37. this is just lovely! I've made this pattern before and now your lovely version is making me want another :)

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