So I figured out how to make the back work on Vogue 8946:
Make it up in a really stretchy jersey and get rid of the back zipper.
This is going to be a mostly-photos post because I don’t have much to say about these versions that I didn’t say about the first version, except: why do pattern companies keep putting zippers into jersey dresses? The only time I’ve ever found it necessary or worthwhile is on stable knits like ponte.
This version is a lightweight poly jersey–the same poly jersey I made into dancing leggings in the winter. I don’t think I ever posted that version, but I wore them to dance class a lot. And then had lots left over, enough to make this dress and still leave me with about 1m in scrap.
This version has no lining: it’s just a straight-up pullover dress with front pleats. It’s lightweight and stretchy so good for dancing, and quite comfortable, and looks nice. Initially I just basted the back seam together to see if it would pull on ok without the zipper, and yep. It sure does.
The only thing I’m not thrilled with is a slightly wobbly neckline, where it stretched out during hemming. I keep meaning to thread a running stitch through it and gentle it back into shape. We’ll see if I ever do.
This version will be a strictly dancing dress. It’s stretchy enough to be very comfortable, but I can’t imagine anything that would make the cut and print work-appropriate. I’m open to suggestions, though.
I then made it up again in a rayon/linen/spandex blend fabric I’ve had in the stash for years, this time with a lining because I was concerned that the white background would be too see-through.
Again, basted up the back seam to make sure it pulled on ok without the zipper. It sure did. And it looks so much better without it. Plus you save the cost of the zipper.
I didn’t have quite enough to make this in the original pattern length, so it’s quite a bit shorter, but I think it works. The fabric had an amazing large-scale print on it with those gorgeous turquoise flowers growing horizontally across the fabric, and I cut the skirt to position them mostly towards the bottom and on one side, and cut the top to be mostly white. The sleeves were then cut individually to put the print close to the shoulder seam to match the bodice, at least somewhat. I think it worked out quite well and takes advantage of the print nicely. And now I can actually wear this fabric, instead of sporadically petting it in my stash.
The placement of the print along the waist was completely accidental. There’s actually a diagonal seam running through that–I couldn’t have planned it if I tried. And the placement of the print along the bust is also completely accidental, though less happily. I think it’s ok though.
This version I am planning to wear to work as well as dancing. I think with a cardigan or jacket, it’ll be perfect.
I should be a combined size 14/16/20 in BMV patterns, and this is sewn up mostly in a size 10, grading to 14 at the hips, with a pivot-and-slide FBA to give 2″ per side across the front.