The title sounds a bit like a sappy novel, but, really, it is the name of the pattern I used to make my first serious sewing project for myself! I was excited starting out with this project. I set my sights pretty high for how I wanted this to turn out. Most of my dressy clothes are skirts and blouses, and I really wanted to wear a real dress for a change! The Catherine’s Choice pattern is a nursing dress pattern put out by Baker Lane. The bodice is lined and you are supposed to untie the front and pull up the bodice to nurse your baby discreetly. The dress is quite long and I wasn’t really into such a long dress for the summer months. (hopefully I will be making some more longer ones for the cooler months) I thought the dress would look cute if it hit just below the knees. A retro look is what I was looking for. The wearable muslin was made out of some brown cotton I had in my stash, and I bought a pretty fabric with pink polka dots on a cream background for the version I wanted to wear to a friend’s wedding.
The pattern is printed on heavy paper. (which I LOVE!) Not having done much altering before, I spent a very long time measuring and altering to get this to fit right. I transferred it onto some free interfacing I had gotten a long time ago. This way I could check the fit easily. Even so, I still managed to make the bodice of the brown muslin too big. I had made it based on my bust measurement and that made it too big in the neck and it fit weird under my arms. Back to the drawing board I went and took some advice I had heard a long time ago- cut the pattern out based on your shoulder measurements. This seemed to work much better and the fit of dress #2 was MUCH better than the first! I think if I make this again I will add a little more ease over the bust and underlay, lengthen the bodice an inch or so and do a large upper arm adjustment. Best of all it was ready to wear to my dear friend Leah’s wedding! ( and church and another wedding!)
Some of the changes I made were to shorten the skirt and modify the tie on the front. The tie was long and had short length of elastic in the back. I lengthened the elastic and shortened the tie by quite a bit. The longer elastic made it so I didn’t have to tie and untie the front while trying to hold on to a writhing, fussy, starving 1 year old! Overall, I think this dress is cute and once you have made one the second comes together fairly easily. 🙂