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An Epic Maxi Anna Dress

photo (5)


I feel like I’ve been waiting to make this dress for years, even though I just bought the pattern in May. Since then I’ve bought three fabrics with the thought of making Anna out of them before I even made one. Something told me this dress was going to be epic… and it is!

Even though I had perfected the fit of my Elisalex bodice and tend to go with the same size in patterns from the same company, I played it save and made a muslin of the Anna bodice anyway. I used actual muslin that I got from Joanne’s as part of their 4th of July sale for 99 cents a yard. Apparently they put muslin on sale to celebrate America every year because this is the second year in a row I’ve stocked up on the cheap.

The muslin was just that, very cheap and musliny. Its quite stiff, especially in comparison to my lovely cotton that feels like it has a tad of stretch in it. When the straight size 12 fit very snuggly in the muslin, I knew my fabric was going to be great. My mom actually had to cut me out of the muslin, it was quite amusing.

photo[1]My original plan was to just use the bodice and make a gathered skirt because I have seen so many versions like that in blog land that look amazing! However, when I was tracing the bodice pieces I fell in love with the skirt. Don’t ask me how since the pieces for it aren’t even on all on one paper but there was just something about the look of it and I knew I had to go for the maxi. Thus, a frantic late night order of more fabric and my dreams of wearing it to the Lowell Folk Festival in 2 days crushed. Life goes on.

I ordered my additional fabric late Thursday night and it arrived via the mail man Saturday afternoon, I threw it in the wash and went about my day. Of course I stayed up late to get the dress done and right before midnight I finished. I really took my time with this dress but it still came together fairly quickly. I matched up each and every notch (honestly this is something I usually skip), pressed and pinked all seams, was very cautious of matching all bodice and skirt seams and of course, matched my back seams after putting in the zipper.

My invisible zipper installation still needs some work but the girls at work said the little bit of orange is fun and a nice pop, plus I’m proud of how far I’ve come! I hate to blame my tools but I’ve heard some pretty nasty reviews about plastic invisible zipper feet and think it could be the culprit. My machine doesn’t have a metal option so I’m just going to keep on keeping on. Each one I do gets a little better so perhaps its a combination of the foot and my experience.

neck gap, up close and personal.

neck gap, up close and personal.

Like any good pattern, I have a change for next time. My neck area has a little bit of extra room at the front, maybe 1/2 an inch, and in my next version I’m going to eliminate that. Also I have an addition, if I go for the maxi length again I’m going to fully line and be daring with the thigh high slit.

I have big plans for the V neck bodice in a floral print with a circle skirt and another slash neck version with a gathered skirt, so be sure to come back and see. 🙂


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