New Look 6184- A Tiki Room Dress

New Look 6184 was the first pattern I ever purchased back in 2015 when I first started sewing. I bought a black cotton fabric (which was actually a quilting fabric but I didn’t know that at the time) and I watched Professor Pincushion on YouTube to learn how to follow a pattern and sew a dress. The dress actually ended up wearable and I wore it to work. I wish I saved that dress (for nostalgic purposes) but I ended cutting it up since I didn’t plan on ever wearing it again. I later used the fabric to make masks. I made that first dress using quilting fabric and although it’s fine sewing dresses with quilting fabric, it’s not my preference. I didn’t know much about apparel fabric back then. What’s interesting is that this dress has darts and a zipper in the back. For a beginner, that’s a pretty good start. Now I avoid zippers only because I don’t like sewing them in, so I felt this pattern would be good practice since I was already familiar with it. I want to start sewing up dresses with zippers again.

This pattern make was on my list for my 2021 sewing plans. That plan started off as a February plan, but I felt that I was being too ambitious.

New Look 6184 is described as a sleeveless dress with a pleated neckline. It has a back zipper, waistline seam and can be made with a flared skirt in two lengths or a knee length pencil skirt with a back vent. There are belt options included.

At the tiki, tiki, tiki, tiki, tiki room…

I chose View E, which is the style the model is wearing but minus the belt. I chose a shirting fabric in navy blue and camo green with palm fronds all over it. It has a very tropical feel and has a Tiki look to it. I chose a camo green thread and it matched perfectly even though there is a lot of navy color in the dress.

I made my usual adjustment of cutting off 1 inch from the bodice. I didn’t do a narrow shoulder adjustment on this one, but I usually do for about 1/2 an inch. The pleats at the neckline and the waist darts were easy to do. It reminded me of my first time making this dress so it was kind of fun. I remember not having such a hard time with the back vent at the skirt, but this time around, I had to read the directions over and over in order to make sure I do it correctly. It ended up looking great.

The thing I was most nervous about was the zipper installation. I avoided zippers before only because I don’t like installing them. To me, it’s very difficult due to lack of practice. Over the summer last year, one of my first makes of the lockdown was a short jumper with an invisible zipper and I totally messed that up. Big time. I think I was still a little traumatized from that. This zipper was not an invisible zipper, but a regular zipper. I took my time with it and it ended up looking great, too!

After I was done, I put on my dress and there was a bunch of fabric at the back. I thought I was being proactive by shortening the bodice by 1 inch to prevent that, but there was still a lot of fabric bunched up. It was mostly at my upper back and neck. I installed 2 neck darts to fix that and it worked well to fix the problem.

I didn’t even know neck darts existed until now…

Can’t wait to wear it! Hopefully one day to a Tiki lounge or to the Tiki Room. Happy sewing!


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