Red cowl dress (Vogue 2333: Diane Von Furstenberg)

Red cowl dress

Red cowl dress

I was preparing to make the pants that I talked about in the last post when this pattern came through the mail slot. It was a vintage Vogue 2333 – Diane von Furstenberg pattern, probably from the late 70’s or early 80’s. 

From the pattern envelope: “Very loose-fitting, pullover dress with bias blouson bodice and straight skirt, five inches (12.5 cm) below mid-knee or evening length, has front cowl neckline, elasticized waistline, side front slanted pockets, side hemline slits and short kimono sleeves. Self belt has D-rings and edgestitch trim.”

Vogue 2333 - Diane von Furstenberg

The pattern is labelled as ‘very easy’, and who can resist such an instant gratification?! I put aside the pants and started on the dress instead. It was very easy indeed, despite several alterations that I made.

As usual I shortened the bodice by 4 cm, an alteration that I always need to do with commercial patterns. The fabric is rayon with purple flowers on red background. It is a bit see-through, so I added lining to the skirt part. The bodice pieces are cut on bias and kept unlined. I think the drapes would be enough to keep the top part from becoming too see-through.

Red cowl dress

Side slanted pocket and elasticized waist

In the instructions, the waist seam allowances are stitched up to make a channel for the elastic. Since I’ve added lining, I sandwiched the top part between the skirt and skirt lining, then topstitched the waist toward the skirt to create the channel for elastic. I kinda liked it better because there are no visible seam allowance on the inside of the dress. I also omitted the self belt and preferred to wear the dress as it is or with a different belt.

The thing I love about commercial pattern is the instructions where I can learn a lot about construction. This dress doesn’t have any visible topstitching. The back facing and pockets are understitched and the hem is blindstitched. I didn’t blindstitch by hand though, gotta love the blindstitch button on my sewing machine!

The hem was initially longer that the final product, as I kept them proportionally in the same length as the description on the pattern envelope, which is ‘5 inches below mid-knee’. But the length definitely wasn’t working for me when I tried it on. I shortened the dress a bit, put it on again and still didn’t feel comfortable with the length. Cut and tried again several times and suddenly it is now drastically a mini dress. Or maybe a tunic? Anyhow, I feel that this is working now!

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Pattern is Very Easy Vogue 2333 (Diane von Furstenberg), size 8 (bust 31.5″).