Monday, April 16, 2007

Vogue 2753 Issey Miyake dress

Reviewed by:Ann Smith
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Posted on:7/31/03 7:11 PM
Last Updated:8/2/03 1:51 PM
Pattern Size:Regular
Project Photo:photo
Pattern Photo:

Pattern Information provided by Ann Smith

Pattern Rating:Difficult, but ended up with good results

Issey Miyakes patterns are always adventures and this is no exception. It looks more normal than many of his designs but that is an illusion. This is Vogue's description: close-fitting top has front and back extending into sashes, armhole binding and stitched hem. Fitted, pull-on, flared skirt, above ankle has elastic waistband and stitched hem. OK, that tells what it is, sort of. What isn't said is that the top consists of 2 bodice pieces and a huge rectangle that is about 2 feet wide by 9 yds long. This long piece is gathered at its mid-point and that is placed at your shoulder. The rest drapes over the front and back, is partially fastened at one side, and then wrapped around the waist and tied. The skirt has an equally strange piece that is gathered alot vertically to form the front of the skirt. The back of the skirt has horizontal gathers at the hip. The back wraps to the front to form points at the hem.

It seems to be a challenge to Vogue to figure out how to describe construction on these unusual styles. There are several mistakes (drawing shows wrong side of fabric, notches are reversed) and one inexplicable description that made no sense to me at all. That is the place 2/3rds through construction of the top where it says to put wrong side of front to right side of back (this is also where the drawing of notches seems wrong). If you are making this, my recommendation is to baste the drape to the bodice first, which will give you some idea of what that instruction means. It involves sort of twisting the piece.

The fabric suggestions on the pattern are very confusing. It says top and skirt, two way stretch knits. Then it says Contrast: (top front and back, skirt upper back and waistband) two way stretch knit sheer. For one thing, there doesn't appear to be any contrast in the 2 pictures on the pattern envelope. For another, while the "contrast" part should be stretchy, it doesn't need to be sheer. And the rest of it, while needing to be sheer doesn't need to be stretchy. Is this helping any one?

Also about fabric choice....the wrong side will show at the hem and on the sash unless you are very careful about how you drape and tie it. My fabric, sheer knit onionskin, has a different looking backside that I'm not happy about showing. I haven't hemmed the skirt yet and you can see how the white backside shows on the points. I haven't decided quite what to do, whether to minimize the points or just not care about it. It will be at least an inch shorter, maybe more.

Another problem I encountered had to do with a fit issue. The drape is stitched together about 12 inches down from mid-point to form the side seam. The opening above the stitched place goes over your head to go from left shoulder at the neck to under your right arm. I am only 5'3" and it wasn't long enough for me. It was very tight under the arm. I let the seam down an inch but there wasn't much allowance to turn back because of the way it is cut with the pattern. I suggest measuring yourself at that diagonal before cutting out the fabric and moving that place down a bit to fit properly. Before making this, I had no idea where that particular part of the pattern was going to go on my body so it never occured to me that there would be a fit issue.

All that said, I love this dress. I know it's not in compliance with WNTW rules what with gathering and sashing, and in a light color as well. But I feel like a goddess in this dress. It seems sort of Greek. I really didn't expect it to look any good at all so I'm pleasantly surprised by it. The top can be worn separately as can the skirt.

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