Re-stitching Infinity

My favorite well-loved “Infinity Dresses” have kicked the bucket. My black one (my LBD) was so thread-bare you could see through it and I had to chuck it back in July when a friend of mine did an intervention. It was so hard to part with and I was LBD-less! My brown one is still functioning, sort of. I’ve had to make a few repairs and the fabric is pilly, but you can’t really tell, right? Needless to say, I decided to whip up a new one.

grey dress 4 with akylis best

Step 1: Pattern hunting:

Available stash options: Free tutorial (strapless?), Butterick 5783 (sleeves?), Butterick 5606 (straps?), and McCalls 6353 (strapless?)

Ultimately my choice came down to two factors: A) my original dresses had become more problematic due to my son pulling on them (a tube dress no-no) so the two strapless versions were out and b) the fact that I live in the tropics where sleeves are optional 90% of the year kicked out B5783. Leaving B5606 as the clear winner.

I picked up several yards of a charcoal grey medium weight jersey from Jo-Anns in my suitcase before coming back from my summer trip State-side. I bought the fabric as a “basic” so there was plenty. In my mind, making it up in grey would be slightly more casual than a black one. A neat accident is that the back and the front of the fabric are slightly different because while the front looks uniform in color, the back has a micro-pinstripe from the 2 color knitting process and there’s a slight sheen, which really made the ties unique and beautiful.

grey dress 5 portrait

Step 2: Making it:

There were some minor pattern changes I made based on looking at the model photos. The pattern model looks very exposed, so I raised the front and back necklines by one inch. I also drafted armhole and neckline facings. I figured it would help prevent “stretch out” and make the neckline more modest. Note: the Butterick pattern website has an error and says this dress looks the same front and back. There is a distinctive neckline height difference, the back is higher and by raising it more, it keeps the neckline in place even when I’m carrying my son.

This pattern practically fell together and fits beautifully (and I didn’t even make a muslin!). The hardest part was cutting out the ties since they are so long and my hallway is narrow. The only thing I might change in the future is the angled base of the ties. It attaches to the dress at such an angle that if you don’t tie carefully you end up with hip holster bumps. (See next to my fingers below? I retied it and then took the rest of the pics!)

grey dress 1

Also in the washing and hang drying processes, the curved edges of the tie base can stretch out if you’re not careful. I caught this before the raw edge finish developed serious runs and fray-check has nipped that in the bud, but a more delicate fabric would have really shown the damage.

Step 3: Wearing it with pride!

grey dress 6 with AkylisI had my husband snap off a few shots before we left for dinner Friday night. I am in love with this look and want to make it again in a bright, fun color or vibrant print since grey isn’t a day or beach color in my book. pattern review