Friday, September 9, 2011

The Vogue Rollercoaster

I have not had much luck with Vogue patterns. Of the four that I have tried, two of them ended up in the trash: both pattern and garment. That is a pretty dismal success rate. And it's not like I'm trying obscure patterns or anything; I chose patterns that had been carefully vetted by readers before making a move! I'm beginnng to think that Vogue patterns do not really fit my sewing style. My idea of a perfect pattern is one that isn't too fiddly, and where you end up with a garment that looks impressive but took almost no time to sew.

Vogue patterns are anything but that, at least that's my impression from the four I've done. And the pattern rating on the back is just humiliating. The dress I just completed is rated as "Easy." I did not find it easy at all, and therefore my sewing ego took a beating. I need vanity pattern ratings, like vanity sizing in the clothing world; a simple t-shirt with a warning label like, "Only very advanced, skilled seamstresses should attempt!" Of course, the pattern company wouldn't sell many patterns that way, but it would make me feel better.

Anyway, here is the one dress that did turn out fairly well, despite a lot of sewing frustrations. The biggest problem was no fault of the pattern, but that of my machine: it kept eating the fabric. Constantly! Ugh, it was a horror. I tried everything to correct the issue and finally through a magical combination of changing needles, cleaning the machine, and changing the thread, I was able to finish the thing. But not without a lot of swearing on my part.

Now I just need to go dancing. I'm not sure what else this dress is appropriate for, but I do like it!

Pattern: Vogue 1225

The fabric is a thin, slippery poly blend knit with glittery leaves sprinkled throughout. I originally was selling this on Bamblue Fabrics, but I sold not one single yard (probably a good thing, now that I know how difficult it is to sew with!). I only had 5 yards, so I decided to keep it all for myself.

Another Vogue pattern I tried recently was the much-lauded V8379 wrap-dress. readers ranked this as one of the best patterns of 2007 AND 2008, and it is in the 2009 Hall of Fame. But....I just didn't like it! I have a tried and true wrap dress pattern that I love (Onion 2010), and was resistant to trying a new one, but the Vogue pattern had so many good reviews that I couldn't help myself. But it is much fiddlier than the Onion pattern. Also, the facing pops out constantly, which is OK given my busy fabric choice, but I'd be really bummed if I had made this in a solid color. Finally, nearly all the reviews I read on Patternreview said to lengthen the bodice, so I did....but now it's much too long. Ugh.

Overall, I do like the dress, but next time I'll go back to the Onion pattern:

I do like the sleeve and collar detail on the Vogue pattern: I may steal it to put on the Onion pattern next time.
Pattern:  Vogue 8379

One dress I won't be showing you is Vogue 1235, which ended up in the trash. I adore the look of this dress, and badly wanted it to turn out nicely....but sadly, it just did not work for me. So many things went wrong, and by the time I joined the bodice to the skirt the whole thing was just a mess. I don't know if it was the pattern or me. I may try it again someday.....


  1. You create such sensational looking outfits! Your Vogue wrap dress reminds me of a DVF Jeanne wrap dress and you look STUNNING in it. I hope you wear it often, because it really is a very attractive dress on you.

  2. My machine doesn't like those thin fabrics either, but I think the fabric choice was perfect for the style. Very pretty!

    And the details on the wrap dress are very nice.

  3. I have made this dress as a gift, it is now complete but I dont know how it wraps round, there is not a hole for the inside strap to come trhough the fabric? HELP!!I want to figure it out before giving the as gift.

  4. Hi Carah - So sorry for the delay in responding - I've been crazy busy trying to finish up sewing Christmas presents! Anyway, there is actually a hole in the side for the inside strap to come through. If you made the whole thing without putting one in, it's not a big deal. You can either open up the side seam a couple of inches or even put a large button hole in. Good luck!