I will whine some more, but I will show you some process pictures first:
Planning and some mathematics in the beginning
This is the basic bodice pattern I started with. I attached the front and back piece together and cut off the front in a straight line from the armhole out. Then I sliced the lower half and closed the dart.
I originally intended to cut the dress on the bias, but I was about five inches short of fabric... I wonder if it would have made all the difference...
Lower half of front bodice
Here's what the complicated part looks like, it is the back bodice, the sleeves and the upper half of the front all in one piece!
I even constructed it so that the part that ties in front is cut in the same piece! This part would have been double (had facing) if I had more fabric, now I just planned to use some white bias tape around the edges to stop it from fraying and give it some more structure.
...So what went wrong?
I realized, after sewing, ripping, sewing, tweaking, and so on over and over, that the potato-sack situation wasn't my fault, it's the fabric! It's secretly stiff! It looks all nice and soft and silky, but as soon as the seams go in, all the softness go out! Every fold goes all Madonna-pointy-cone-bra instead of soft and flowing. And since this pattern basically depends on the fabric being soft and drape-y, it really does not work. I guess that's a lesson to learn...
One of the things that bugs me most is that I really liked that fabric, and my first plan for it was a very simple 50's dress... which probably would have worked a lot better. But, then there is the part in me that sees something that looks really hard to sew, or is constructed in some super-complicated but intricate and gorgeous way and just has to go for it! Sure I can make the easy stuff too (like the tube dress from a few days ago) but that's not at all as FUN!
Well, so after ten hours of the not-so-fun part of sewing, the top is looking as good as it gets (not very well, that is). I have resewn the four seams that connect the pieces more times than I would like to admit... but nothing else. So basically, in ten hours: cutting, zigzaging, attaching a tiny piece of facing, and four seams. I think I just broke my maximum-Murphy's-Law-in-one-dress record!
Work so far:
Facing on front lower bodice
Sewing the two bodice pieces together at the front...
...and the sides/under the sleeves. Looks good as long as it's on the table, right?
Anyway I hate giving up, so I guess I will try to put the whole thing together tomorrow, despite a very certain feeling of it being pointless... Since I'm leaving for the other side of the country and my family and friends early morning the day after tomorrow, it would be nice to get this over and done with by then.
I promise to let you all know what happens!
Edit: And now a drinking glass exploded in the kitchen. Without anyone (neither cat nor human) even being near that room. Right, Murphy's it is today yes.