Fabric: Kaufman Brussels washer linen blend, midnight blue and brass 1/2'' buttons.
Size & Cut: Bodice size 12, graded to 16 at the hips.
Details and deviations:
My first successful FBA! I added 2 inches of volume, making two darts per side instead of a giant dart. The result in the bust is good... but the best part is the back: it fits! This is the first back I have not had to modify by trimming length or width. Instead, it was cut the right size, and the front was adjusted to add in my extra bust inches, rather then the other way around. Smart, huh.
So it turns out the grading to 16 at the hips was unnecessary, 14 would have sufficed with room to spare. The pattern has a lot of ease after the waist and I should have trusted the "finished garment" measurements on the pattern. The result is some puffiness right on the top of the hips where the grading is too steep, probably not too noticeable to anyone but me.
I did not use interfacing, instead I used simple cotton lining, with an extra layer sandwiched in the collar. The result is fine, but the button holes are too far from the edge, which occasionally flares up and reveals the white fabric. It's not terrible, but not what I was expecting. I'll use a cool but not so contrasting fabric next time. Maybe something shiny.
The sleeveless version of the dress is not appealing or flattering to those with already wide shoulders so I added the short sleeves from the peplum version. Then, I added rolled up cuffs to the sleeves which looks good in linen, nice and informal.
Lastly, I sewed the facing down on both long sides of the button placket in super long rectangles. It is more secure and neater than the pattern directions. The stitch line on the outer layer looks fine to me!