Can I make a dress in 3 days, only sewing in the evenings? Yes I can. It was stressful, tense, and so much swearing...but I did it!
It was cut out on Tuesday night and I constructed most of the bodice. Wednesday morning before work I finished the armhole facings. Wednesday night was the pockets, sewing the skirt together, gathering the skirt and attaching it to the bodice, inserting the zip incorrectly, and then just MacGyvering the back of the bodice to work with the incorrect zip. That last step was where all the swearing was. I tried it on. And got stuck in it. More swearing.
It was tense.
But it was finished!
I've previously made Vogue 8789 in a lovely yellow cotton duck type fabric. This time it was from a 'spots and stripes' cotton range at Spotlight. Cheap and cheerful.
I did my usual construction of this pattern which is to change the side zip to a back zip.
This is the bodice completed. It's not the best job, but I was rushing! One day I will make this in a stripe and it will be glorious. Beautifully matched stripes running to the front of that bodice.... gorgeous.
The little armhole facing is hiding in there. These armholes facings are not interfaced at all which makes this dress such a quick make. No interfacing, no messing around with stuff. Just get on with it. Perhaps my cutting out was inaccurate, but I can never get the facing seam to line up with the bodice seam. It's fine. I'll just do a little bit of invisible hand sewing to hold the facing in place.
The skirt is attached and the zipper is going in! At this point in time, I didn't know the zip was being stitched in the wrong place.... That was for future M to discover.
The Birthday Partay!
You wouldn't believe it. I didn't actually get any full length pictures in my outfit at the party! There are some almost full length like the picture below. The cardigan and beret were also made by me from a while ago.
Have a look at the general shenanigans. All names of people read from left to right. I didn't get photos with everyone. I was too busy having a lovely day!
Me and my lovely. He did the sound set up for the day. He rocks. :D Happy M.
This Poppy skirt is fantastic! It's one of Gertie's for Butterick - B6285. I made the size 10. It comes with a bit of a story.
This was the skirt I made to wear on Christmas Day, 2016. The day before I left to visit my family I tried it on.... and it didn't fit! The waistband was too small. I unpicked it and threw the skirt in the corner. I covered it with other projects as I couldn't bare to see it. Mocking me. Still not fitting. What a betrayal.
Fast forward 6 months.
My Lovely was playing guitar in a band for a community theatre show a few Friday's ago. We had to leave the house at about 6.30pm. At 4.30pm I decided on a whim I was going to finish the skirt and wear it that evening! Found the left over fabric, cut out a new waistband and added a couple of inches on either side, did the interfacing, stitched it on, stitched in the ditch, added the hook and eye and BAM! New skirt ready to go.
Now I want to make another one! Thinking a textured black, definitely a solid colour that isn't grey. I'm open to suggestions.
The double-stacked box pleats are seriously gorgeous and make the skirt full and twirly, like every good skirt should be. The pockets rock my world. Pockets on all the things. Pockets or die!
Top: Black Gable by Jennifer Lauren Handmade
Pillbox Hat: Made my me - tutorial on the way
Skirt: Butterick 6285 size 10
Shoes: B.A.I.T Footwear
Petticoat - eBay
Half slip - Target
Welcome to the second post in this little series. Let's talk about clothing. Our recent temperature was pushing the 40°C mark. Not only is that very hot, but the Aussie sun is brutal. I can burn in about 5 mins. Not just a little pink glow, but a solid red burn (thanks mum and dad). Clever dressing and sunscreen is the way to go!
A few general guidelines about clothing for super hot and strong sun days.
1. Cover as much of the neck as possible.
Clothes are a great UV protector. Crew necks are the best. Yes, they make you sweat, but that's a small price to pay. The pink top in the picture below is the Gable Top by Jennifer Lauren Handmade. Get into it, it's a wonderful pattern. Note the slash neck covers most of my neck, especially the décolletage which tends to burn very fast. (Skirt is made by me - Simplicity 3733)
2. Protect the shoulders, the arms and the pits!
If the arms cannot be covered, then at least aim to protect the shoulders and the fleshy bits around the armpit. Nothing hurts quite like sunburn around the armpits. The thought process usually goes "it's hot! I'll wear something small and then I'll be nice and cool." Let me tell you from experience, shoulder, arm and related area sunburn is really painful. Can't sleep in any position without significant discomfort. Kimono sleeves are a great option as they let the breeze through, but do protect the shoulders. The dress below is made in a linen blend from Vogue 8811. High neck, hat and sunnies for ultimate protection!
3. Learn to love the long.
Maxi dresses, maxi skirts and palazzo pants are the way to go. Legs should be covered. It has been well documented that behind-the-knee sunburn is off-the-charts painful. Sunburn in a hinge joint... ouch. The full length is delightfully stylish, swishy and helps move air around. The palazzo pants below are store bought though I do have plans to make some of my own. The teal dress is the Anna Dress by By Hand London. Kimono sleeves and wide boat neck. I did get sunburn in this dress just the other day - on the shoulders.
Hats, lightweight gloves, shawls and parasols can help protect the skin from sunburn. A sunburnt head and part is perhaps the most unpleasant type of sunburn I've experienced. Ever. Gives you a headache, makes you feel really hot, can't brush or style your hair, the skin peels and looks like dandruff. The worst.
I would also highly recommend carrying a little fan. Not only helpful in hot weather, but gorgeously cute. Polaroid sunglasses with Category 3 or 4 lenses will protect eyes from harmful UV rays. Most of my sunnies come from The Cancer Council. They have a great range and are high quality. The hats pictured below are all vintage and bought from markets.
The higher the number, the stronger it is. But most people don't know how it works. An example: 30+ means you get 30 x longer in the sun than you usually take to burn. So my 5 mins x 30 = 2hrs and a bit before I need to reapply. Basically, reapply sunscreen frequently to make sure it stops sunburn.
I apply it on my face pretty much every morning in summer. Toner > moisturiser > 50+ face sunscreen > standard makeup. If you need top ups through the day, just dab it on top the the make up. This can make you look a little greasy, but it's better than being sunburnt!
In regards to fabric choice, natural fibres are best. They breathe, they feel lighter, and they do not melt into the skin if alight (see post here for more about that). There are also fabrics that are 'moisture wicking'. That means they draw moisture away from the skin. A lot of sports clothes and active wear have wicking properties. Avoid polyesters like the plague. They are clingy, they increase heat and therefore sweat. No one needs that.
I hope this post has been helpful with dealing with summer and brutal sun! Good luck, cover up, use sunscreen and have a wonderful (and safe) summer season.
Knitter. Home seamstress. Dance Teacher.