Simplicity 2015 1080 Dottie Angel dress part I

 . . . sigh.  Yes, I've hopped on the twee dress bandwagon.  Enter Dottie Angel:

(I'm scalping part of this from my Sewing Pattern Review writeup.)

Okay, this is going to sound a lot more negative than I mean it to be:

The problem with simple patterns is that they usually fit one specific body type really well and everyone else poorly-to-not at all. This one, it turns out, has two pattern pieces that are the same except that the front has markings for pockets. Yes, you read that correctly: The front and back are the same.

The up side of this is that, yes, it's easy to sew. But does it fit?

. . . not so much.

The back width and bust width are identical, so if you're bigger than an A cup, it will be tight across the front. Going up a size doesn't help because then the shoulders are too big (and the bust is still probably tight. My first muslin was like this. I'm a just-barely-a-C-cup so we're not talking Dolly Parton geography or anything). And it runs a bit big--I ended up cutting a small despite being a pattern size 12+slight FBA. The shoulders on the medium were huge.

So, despite my determination to do a quick and adorable little dress, I ended up using another pattern I'd already fitted to graft on a higher neckline (the neckline is very wide if you have a lean upper body). I added back neck darts and did a 2" overall (1 inch per side) full bust adjustment. The first version I did of this, I skipped the side dart and only added width, which helped.  The second time, I am adding the side dart, too (I'll post this later). 

 I drew the third leg of the FBA to the shoulder instead of the armscye, though, to avoid messing up the cap sleeve/extended shoulder. Seems to have worked OK despite being technically wrong. 

 Changes:FBA, complete neckline redraw.

Lowered the waist tucks/beltline a lot. This is partly because I have a low bust and I had to, and partly because I didn't want it to be empire-waisted (so part fit issue and part design change).

Side note: The lower skirt panel on the original pattern is just cut straight across instead of following the curve of the hemline. I'm not putting up with that; I traced and cut a new one that's shaped correctly. I'm also doing a variant with a flared skirt panel.

Did an applied belt that buttoned at the sides instead of the back ties (I'm just not that into back ties). 

Bound all edges in bias binding.

The fabric was dull purple small floral and gray small floral trim, from Joann's:

In person: