In the meantime, I have started *another* dress. This one will not take nearly as long as the first. The first one took me at least 12 hours of actual work time to complete, not including the muslin mockup.
The fabric is an awesome kitchy apples and pears print that I found at Joanns. This dress will be a bit more tongue in cheek.
Given the more casual fabric, I picked a more casual dress design as well. I saw a picture of a dress someone had made from this pattern on a message board, so I decided to find it. Its a Project Runway pattern, and I have mixed feelings about it.
Whether its because I've already made a dress, or that this fabric is cotton, not silk, or that the pattern is actually easier, this dress is going MUCH faster. But, the pattern itself isn't as nice as the first one I used. First, this pattern came on 2 HUGE sheets of tracing paper. I don't have a surface that large in my apartment, which made it really cumbersome to work with and then fold up after! I had to cut out a lot of extra pieces to get to the pieces I needed, because of course, they were in the middle of the 4x6 sheets. Also, the instructions with this one are really lacking. If I hadn't made that first dress, I would been tearing my hair out trying to figure out what they're talking about. In addition, instead of showing how to make the base of the dress and then going on to the additions, they are all mixed in. This results in a lot of time flipping back and forth and finding the right boxes, blah. Not want I want to be doing.
So last night it took me just under 4 hours to cut the fabric out, and sew together the main pieces of the dress, including putting in the zipper. It was amazing-- I didn't have to do ONE THING more than once! Very exciting! Tonight I will finish the arm holes (making the sleeveless version) and the neckline. Then hopefully I can wear it tomorrow!