Simplicity 8608 Ruffle Wrap Dress
Posted on Sunday the 17th June 2018 by The Crafty Pinup
Hi pinups! I'm feeling super summer-y in my Simplicity 8608 faux wrap ruffle dress but for me, this pattern wasn't plain sailing. It's a relatively new Simplicity pattern and was surprisingly bang on trend when it came out as ruffle dresses are all over the high street this summer. As soon as I saw the 8608 pattern I fell in love and had such high hopes for all of the variations.
Here's a peek at the pattern:
In this blog post I'm reviewing the popular ruffle mini dress, option A, but I have recently also sewn the long jumpsuit version, option D, with semi-disappointing results (I shared a flat-lay snap on Instagram). That one hasn't quite made it to my blog yet for a review but maybe one day soon. But for now, lets focus on the faux wrap dress!
Firstly this variation eats up fabric, with the double layer front skirt, big flounce sleeves and lots of ruffles, make sure you have enough. If it looks like too much, you'll certainly use it all up! So on the surface this pattern is lovely and a flattering simple-to-sew style, but whether it was me or the pattern, I had some hurdles.
I'll start with my front neckline ruffles. As far as I am aware I made no mistakes in the cutting out or sewing, but my two neckline ruffle pieces are totally different in their final ruffled nature. One neck ruffle isn't sewn down to the waist seam (the ruffle under the wrap front) and the other overlaying ruffle is sewn to the waist, but there seems to be no extra length added to the longer neckline ruffle making for one quite gathered ruffle and then one not at all gathered ruffle. You can see that in my photos and whilst it bugs me, I didn't want to go back and un-pick it and when the dress is on I don't think it's too noticeable. Next time, I will adjust these pattern pieces to match, most likely with a small amount of gathering for both. I would also sew the ruffles into the shoulder seams instead of leaving them out as this makes them fall forward.
I found finishing the edges on these ruffles an absolute nightmare too. I used a rolled hem foot for a neat hem and to help the ruffles 'flute' a little. However I find sewing with my rolled hem foot headache enough, let alone sewing on all these crazy curves! I got there in the end but there are certainly some rough patches...
So lets move from the ruffles onto the skirt and queue my next mistake. I was auto pilot when cutting out and after a while I was starting to lag (there are SO many pieces), and I cut the single front skirt piece the wrong way around. I didn't have enough fabric for another and couldn't get away with the wrong side of the fabric on the outside, so I had to turn it on it's side and trim a bit off. Luckily this print is so busy it's barely noticeable. Another thing to make a note of next time!
Like the neckline ruffle, I also found the skirt ruffle a little lack lustre. The illustrations make the ruffles look as though they are reasonably gathered all the way around, but mine pretty much only just fit. So again I did try to see if this was my mistake but I couldn't find my fault.
When I made the jumpsuit, in short, the fit was my issue. It's so hard to get on and off even with the elasticated waist that it makes it nearly unwearable. I was conscious of this with the dress too and worried I wouldn't be able to get it over my chest or hips. After I tried the dress on (pre-elastic waist) I liked the fit and found it easy to get on and off and figured I would leave it like that as the dress comes with a waist tie. I made the tie next, tried it on again and felt the elastic waist wasn't going to add anything at this point. If I were to sew this with a stretch fabric, I would keep the elastic waist.
Sewing Summary:Pattern: Simplicity 8608
Notions: Elastic for the waist (which I ended up skipping).
Sewing time: A day.
Modifications: No elasticated waist, plus a couple of mistakes...
Difficulty: Medium, a little experience will help you out here.
Watch out for: A lot! Mentioned in my review.
Make Again?: Yes, but with some changes.
Overall, I love the style of the Simplicity 8608 faux wrap ruffle dress and I love the look of my final dress. I feel so pretty wearing it and I'm obsessed with the fabric and it's colour palette (although it's thin and I'm wearing a slip under this to prevent any see through spots!). I wanted to love this pattern so much but both my tries have been a bit disappointing from a technical/construction perspective. Now I know where to rectify the issues, I will be sewing this pattern again but I'll be going a bit rogue with the sewing!
I would love to know if anyone else has tried this pattern and had similar issues?
Thanks for reading, pinups!