I must say, this dress went well until I came to the back facing. Pretty straight forward, but I kept flubbing up--you name it, I did it and had to rip it out two times--arghhh!!! It took three two-hour stretches to finish sewing this dress yesterday (except the hemming, yet to be done). After I got a grip of my brain bubbles and got the facing on, then it was time to sew the side seams. This was the tricky part.
Katie is an athlete and she has a broad back and shoulders. So, in the beginning, I decided to cut the pattern larger at this area and grade the sides to her waistline which is only about 1 1/2 down on the back pieces. It is a drastic change within a short area, so it took a couple of rows of seaming as I sneaked up on the right fit. Then the facings needed to be joined in this area, too. I ended up just sitting down in a comfy chair with needle and thread and sewing the facings together stitch by stitch. This sounds tedious, I know. But it's really much easier because you're catching the narrow hems of the facings in a tight area as the taffeta is unraveling before your very eyes.
Fig 1 (sideseam before hand-shaping)
Today is the hemming. We also decided to add about an 1.5 inches to the length of the straps so the dress will be lowered a little more. This will require taking in the side seams a tad, but it'll fall below the dreaded facing area, so should be relative easy. Just another seam.
Fig 2 (new neckline location) note how the sides will need to be taken in some again...
Finally, we decided not to permanently attach the straps in the front. This will allow her to change the straps configuration as she pleases. She'll attach the straps with safety pins on the inside or two decorative pins on the outside.