Saturday, June 29, 2013

Chado Ralph Rucci - Vogue 1181 - The Caftan, not strictly bias.....

Vogue 1181 Chado Ralph Rucci 1

I'm likely to never wear this outside the house, except for maybe having my morning tea on the deck.  When I first saw this pattern I thought it was impractical, but as I would peruse the Vogue pattern website looking for other things this kept on popping up. Then I saw it sewn up, but many had changed grain lines to get a better fabric yield.  I was curious what would it look like with the intended grain line?  Then another review, a less than perfect fabric selection (fabric with no drape), the reviewer had a sense of humor about it, but how disappointing after all that work and expense.  Just another way that sewing bloggers help each other, we learn from each others triumphs and experiments.

Aside from the general shape of the garment, there are some other areas that need to be studied and they are the length, the center front and the front opening.

Vogue 1181 Chado Ralph Rucci 3

The length... puddling silk is lovely but I have wood floors and do not want to find myself collecting debris as I walk across it.  So we need to look at the grain line of the pattern and the "growth" of the fabric and the pattern measurements.

The center front is on the cross grain, the center back is not true bias but off grain.

The pattern's finished measurement from back neck to floor is 59", and my measurement is 56".

Vogue 1181 Chado Ralph Rucci 2

The center front opening

The front opening falls right between the breasts, and I'm not comfortable with that, so that will have to be addressed.

The center front bust area

Figuring for the possibility that I will wear this without support, I would like to address that area with texture or some kind of stiffening, or maybe just another layer of the self fabric.

Have I covered all of the challenges to making this caftan... no there's more.

Vogue 1181 Chado Ralph Rucci 4

This design takes almost 6 yards of fabric, and the yield is less than impressive, but it's the price you pay for these voluminous styles.  You can be sure that I'll be making panties and if I can a a bias slip or cami out of the scrap.

Vogue 1181 pattern layout

Now raise your hands if you thought this was cut on the bias!  I thought so too, but as it turns out the front falls on the straight grain (bodice only), the two body panels are off grain.  The center back bodice is bias, the panels are cross grain.  I had originally let the fabric hang to measure the "growth" of the bias as the intention was to factor that out so that it wouldn't drag on the floor behind me, after 48 hours the bias was 30% longer.  Since this isn't true bias, I will need to make an adjustment.

So many adjustments.... overall the garment would be long, so shortening it was always the intention.  Across the board I needed to shorten it 3" front and back.

On to construction....


Top piece with neckline facing

Tacked center front

The finished product in a polyester georgette.

V 1181 front 2

Wearing 4" heels, it is still too long, but that can be remedied.  If this were in an opaque fabric, it will make it look wider still.  You really need something with transparency, fluidity, or super saturated color with sheen to show off the drape.

V1181 side

This highlights the seaming, which is really interesting.  You can see how the front piece seams circle around to the back.

v1181 seams

I'm a little disappointed that the top piece couldn't be cut as intended, the piecing seams create drag lines that wouldn't be there if it were a continuous piece, but the pattern is a commitment in yardage and this was a test.

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