Having never sewn a Deer and Doe pattern before, I decided to muslin the bodice first. I was pleasantly surprised with the fit, and just had to make small adjustments to the upper bodice. I pinched about 1/2 inch out of the front neckline and also out of both the diagonals going across the back, tapering to nothing at the armscye. The waist hit at my natural waist, however I am short-waisted. (Having worn it a few times now, I think I should have lowered the bust darts slightly and possibly even lengthened the bodice slightly)
My fabric is a stretch cotton from Thakoon which I bought last year at Mood fabrics. I loved the colours and pattern but I wasn't sure if it was a good colour for me. To try to break up the yellow and define the lines of the dress a little more, I used solid black for the waistband and also added black piping at the neckline, armscye, pocket and back detail. My solid black fabric did not stretch at all and I also felt this would help prevent the fabric from stretching out in the wrong places. I found a reference in my "Complete book of sewing" as to how to make a combined piping/bias facing, which I did everywhere.
My fabric has a fair amount of body and, when combined with the faced hem, it makes the A-line skirt stand away from the body. I quite like this - it feels like it is full without being too much.
I love the back detail.
I think I would make this dress again in a less crisp fabric, maybe a linen/cotton or a cotton lawn. If I do make it again, I think I would lower the neckline for more of a scoop neck. Although comfortable to wear, the neckline is a little higher than I would usually choose; it almost feels a bit "sensible" for a dress with a cut-out back.
A closer view of the black piping along all diagonal lines on the back bodice to define the style of the dress.
The armscye and neckline finished with piping/bias facing. You can just see the piping on the pocket (bottom left)
All in all, it is a hit. And I used just a smidge over 1.5m of my main fabric, so a second version is a definite possibility!