So this is my attempt at a designer knockoff. I have done these before. I knocked off some St. John's shorts earlier this year and they came out great. I also knocked off some Gucci pants which came out great as well. This time, I decided to step up the level of difficulty and knock off a David Meister dress. I saw this dress on Neiman Marcus/Saks and it was for sale for about $300. The dress is no longer listed, but here is the picture of it.
I used New Look 6968 View B as my base pattern. This pattern was perfect because I would only need to draft a front top piece. Who knew how hard that would be! Definitely harder than I thought. But I finally got a dress together and I think I am better for the experience. I really want to advance my sewing skills beyond the basic, so this is just the beginning of doing that.
I rate the pattern as OK, but not for me because I did not like how this dress was put together. I found the waist to be fairly high. The top is 'lined' but the neck also has a facing! The facing goes on top of the lining! I was a good sport and went along with this, but I hated it....ripped the whole thing apart....made the 'lining' a real lining and got rid of the neck facing. This left the arm holes unfinished because they were sewn to the 'lining' in the original format. So I just turned in the lining and hand stitched it down...same with the arm holes of the lining.
I used a poly suiting with a soft sheen and moderate stretch. I paid $7.5 for 1 1/2 yards, so this dress cost me about $13 to make. A LOT cheaper than $300!
The instructions were easy to follow, I just didn't like how the dress was put together as stated above.
I made the design changes needed to make this into my knock-off. I added a waistband piece --- I did this by making the lower part of the dress shorter. I drafted the top front piece and left the bottom pieces (save for shortening them) and the back piece as was. Drafting the front piece was a HUGE challenge bc I had to draft out the darts...four of them. Then I had to draft in the tucks...three on each side. Needless to say, this was a challenge and it took about 2 weeks to do this - alone.
In the end, I am OK with the results. I don't have much sewing experience, no drafting experience, and absolutely no training. I am completely self taught. So I have a long way to go, but I think this was an acceptable start.
I would not recommend this pattern to others because of the lining and facing of the top. There are plenty of sheath dress patterns out there than to have to use this one...unless you are ok with that format...then go for it. Other than that, the pattern was fine.
Here are the pictures....I am a little smaller than my dressform, so its tight on the dressform, but I didn't have anyone to take my pics. (I have got to improve my picture taking..working on that too! :) )