The last couple months have been full of problem projects. It seems like everything I’ve made has gone awry in one way or another. This dress was no exception. I started this Love Notions Lyric dress back in September, but had to put it in time-out for a while. Fortunately, like the Aalborg dress I finished last month, I am so happy that I stuck with it. It may be my favorite garment I’ve made this year, maybe ever.

Look at this neighborhood cutie who joined me for photos!

This dress represents some of my best and worst sewing practices. I was presented with so many struggles and I found solutions! Often, I struggle to make design choices, but with this dress I made some big changes and took some risks that really paid off. It barely resembles the pattern, but in a way that makes it all the more special. It really feels like my own.

Pattern

I fell in love with the Lyric dress the moment it was released last spring. I am a total sucker for a V-neck button-down dress. I loved that it had so many options – five sleeve variations, two skirts and even a peplum top version. Plus pockets, but we’ll get to those later. Lastly, the ultimate selling point: Cups!

The instructions are thorough, but I didn’t love the construction methods. Instead of sewing the bodice and skirt separately and then stitching them together at the waist, the front dress and back dress are constructed and then when the sleeve is set in the flat, the side seams are stitched all at once. It’s a very efficient construction method, but it leaves very little room for fitting along the way.

Fabric

For this dress I used a stretch viscose crepe. I loved the color and texture. It’s a super lightweight viscose with 5% elastane and a loose, textured weave that gives it a bit of a linen look. It was the most fiddley fabric I’ve ever used. It was really light and sheer, yet somehow bulky? Sometimes it was slipping and other times it was sticking to itself. It frayed like crazy. Worst of all, it stretched out everywhere. I’m pretty sure that the majority of my fit issues arose due to the fabric growing and growing despite stay stitching. However, I was very chuffed with my contrast bias binding.

Sewing and Fit

I’m really proud of my sewing process on this project. It seemed like I had issues at every turn, but I allowed myself to just go with it rather than getting upset…most of the time. I’ve never diverted so far from a pattern before, but I’m so happy with the risks I took. It wasn’t like I set out to hack the pattern, but rather as issues arose I was able to make changes to solve the problems.

My first issue were the pockets. The slash pockets on the pattern are useless. I’m still mad about how small they are! I could barely fit my hands in them. Even worse, the weight of the pockets distorted the waist seam. I had extra fabric so I recut the whole skirt. At that point I didn’t trust the fabric to hold the button placket nicely so I omitted it and cut the skirt on the fold. I also decided to stitch up the button placket because I was concerned that button holes would further distort the fabric. Now it just pops on over my head without fastenings. The waist was both too long and too wide so shortened it by 3 centimeters and took in the darts and the side seems. It was still on the looser side so I drafted a long tie belt to cinch it in. Lastly I decided to leave the bishop sleeve unelasticated giving it more of a bell shape, simply because I really like it!

Make Breakdown

Pattern:  Love Notions Lyric
Fabric & Notions: 3 Meters Stretch Viscose Crepe
Design Modifications: Eliminated skirt button placket, stitched bodice placket closed, added waist tie, left elastic off bishop sleeve
Fit Alterations: 2cm seam allowance (instead of 1cm) everywhere, took in side seams and darts around the waist
Size: 16C
Difficulty: Intermediate
Future Plans: Yes! I LOVE the dress I made, but I don’t really feel like I made a Lyric dress. I’m excited to make another one and sew it up as designed (likely in a more stable fabric!)

I finished this dress at 2:00 in the morning the night before our family photoshoot. I couldn’t sleep because I was so excited to wear it the next day! Sadly, our shoot was rained out, but now I have this beautiful dress!

I love how the placket, sleeve and waist tie look together. Actually, I love everything about this dress. It’s comfortable and swishy and easy. I can layer it. I can dress it up or down. It really feels like a reflection of me, both in style and by the growth it represents in my sewing process.

Thank for stopping by! I’m so excited to make an actual Lyric dress to share soon! Happy sewing!