I really like this pattern and I am already thinking what other fabrics I can make this up in. It would look great in a sheer/silk fabric and also a fabric with a lot of drape.
I made the pattern in a size 8 as I find the vogue patterns have a quite a bit of ease, also the pattern has an elastic waistband and so many pleats I knew it would be better smaller rather than bigger. I was also able to get a better fabric layout and only used about 1.5m of fabric rather than the 2.2m suggested.
I made a toile and added 3 centimetres to the bodice length, it is pretty short as it is in the pattern. The instructions were good, but definitely needed. Looking at the pattern pieces I would have no idea how to construct the skirt. The pocket pieces are huge, but once made up the diagonal pocket seams and the fact that the back seams are not at the sides but towards the back are nice details.
A few issues with instructions were that some of the pattern marks were hidden in the pleats, which made it difficult to match up centres and see fold lines. I am not sure if there was an issue with the pattern or if it was me but after making the pleats I had to use the waistband as a measure to make sure the bodice crossover and the skirt folds were in the right place as I couldn't see the marks clearly.
I had another issue in that the machine needle marks were staying in the fabric, so I could not baste anywhere that would be visible on the final garment and had to rely on pinning to keep my pleats in place. I should have used a ballpoint needle for the jersey fabric...but all the shops were shut for the bank holiday and I wanted to plough on and get it finished.
The skirt hem uses a hem facing which creates a really neat edge. The top edge of the facing is stitched in pace with a seam two inches from the hem visible from the outside. I was tempted to use a herringbone hem as I did on the Simplicity 2186 skirt, but I decided to stick with the instruction, but if I made it again I think I would do the herringbone hem.
I think this dress is screaming for a navy blazer. I have been planning on making one for a while, but I don't think I can put it off any longer.