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.
My cousin got married on a beautiful Sunday afternoon in the Dandenong Ranges, VIC. It was a really lovely day (weather wise and event wise). The sun was shining, there was no rain, and it was a beautiful ceremony.
Of course, I had to make a new outfit for the occasion. I sewed this whole outfit out in 1.5 weeks of evening sewing and cutting. I actually made the capelet in two evenings - cutting out included. It was pretty stressful and I finished the night before our flight to Melbourne.
The dress is New Look 6000. What can't this pattern do!? I have made this dress 5 times now. Perhaps that is enough? Nah, probably not...
The pictures below are mostly of the zip process. Lapped zippers look so lovely, but this sure isn't my best one. It was messy and uneven. It was rushed. I regret it. But at least is on my back where I can't see it.
This upholstery brocade fabric frayed as soon as you look at it. The very first thing to do was edge stitch every single piece. Over all the sides. That was tedious! Even the facings had to be done. I usually do my edge stitching in a different colour. Mostly to use up old thread from previous projects.
(I went for the green zip)
This is before the facings and hem were done. It has such a lovely shape. This is the size 12.
Now the little capelet. I used the Butterick 5032 pattern (I think it is out of print?). I have previously made the dress from that pattern and was uninspired by it. Perhaps a poor fabric choice, but the dress pattern is really short waisted.
I made the 12 in the capelet and I LOVE IT! The picture below is just after I had finished attaching the lining. It hadn't been understitched yet, I just couldn't wait to turn it though and see what was happening. It wasn't pressed, it was just thrown onto the body form and I went to bed.
And the finished cape! Check out that gorgeous self covered button. It's the first one I ever made. And boy, it won't be my last. I'm not trying to be humble or anything, but that pattern matching over the front of the cape is an absolute fluke. I should rush through projects more often! The collar sits really nicely, the button is fantastic. The capelet is fastened with a very large press stud underneath the button. It's a super cute finish.
My lovely is wearing a vintage suit that he purchased while we were in Dallas, Texas. It's a really great suit for a spring wedding. Perfect. His shoes are awesome - can't remember where they are from though...
It was a lovely wedding, and a successful outfit. Hooray!
Vintage suit: Dallas, Texas
Tie: Vinnies NSW
Barely seen pocket square (actually a bow tie in matching fabric): made by me
Shoes: can't remember
Capelet: Butterick 5032 (size 12)
Dress: New Look 6000 (size 12)
Stockings and underthings: What Katie Did
Shoes: Django and Juliette
Look at that collar!
I spent a lot of time making sure it was even and pressed and flat and gorgeous and... it is! Very happy M. To make it so lovely and flat, I followed Gertie's collar tutorial for this pattern here. I shall use that tutorial for any collar that needs to be attached in a similar way.
The collar is made in the same fabric as the dress. Mostly because I wanted to be able to rock a cute cardi with the dress. I didn't put the buttons down the front of the dress for the same reason. I really like it. The cardigan is my wine Hetty (by Andi Satterlund). It was a nightmare to make, but it's great with the solid sleeves.
I decided the follow the pattern instructions to insert the zipper. Regret. I should have done my usual centred zip method (machine baste the seam, pin the zip, hand baste, then machine stitch, then unpick the basting stitches). The pattern says press under the seam allowance then line up the zip and the pressed edge. WHAT A PAIN! So much regret. It ended up being so messy that I hand picked the zipper. I'm really happy with how neat the zip is after controlling it with the hand sewing, but it was tedious. Especially when I ignored my better judgement.
This is my third version of 1609 and I think I might be done with it now. I would only make it again if I had small yardage of wool, as it would be a good little winter dress.
Please excuse the horribly wrinkly-ness. These photos were taken after a full day of work.
Cardigan: Hetty (pattern by Andi Satterlund)
Dress: Simplicity 1609.
Tights: Heattech by Uniqlo
A second post about Simplicity 3688. This time, skirts!
I made the size 10 in the skirt (12 in the pants). They fit pretty well. I do have issues with the waistband though. It's like the pattern was printed incorrectly because none of the markings for buttonhole and buttons are in the right spot. If I cut the pattern face-side-down it all works out. And yes, I have check the cutting guidelines.
On to the skirts. The first one I made was an awesome burgundy corduroy from my local Spotlight. It's toasty in winter and I like the rich colour. It is such a great basic skirt. The colour goes well with other handmade and store bought items in my wardrobe. It does get a good wearing workout.
The burgundy skirt was such a hit that I had to make it again! This time in a basic black (it actually matches my black pants from a previous post). Still made it in the size 10 but boy, it is tight around my waist. I don't know if I did something weird. Perhaps the fabric is much more stable and doesn't give at all. Deploy the foundation garments!
I tried making a gorgeous grey wool version with the recommended top stitching down the front and back panels. In a size 12 because this black one is a bit tight over my tum. Size 12 was HUGE. Easily a few inches too big. What on earth happened?!? This is why Simplicity and I don't get along. Not-So-Simplicity-Patterns. I've left it languishing in a corner, thinking about what is has done. Shame really, because the wool fabric is rich and gorgeous. Machine stitches disappeared into it beautifully. Of course! What a pain to unpick.
On my sewing machine currently is a red version (that matches my red cuffed Simplicity 3688 pants). Hopefully I'll get around to finishing it soon, ready for spring. If only I had a light pink vintage style cardigan that would be perfectly tonal....
Ah, Simplicity patterns. What a love/hate relationship we share.
The dress/top patterns are totally wrong for me. I have man-shoulders and Simplicity patterns require way too much work for me to do. I flat out couldn't be bothered tweaking all the little bits that don't fit me. They are too small in the armsyce, the shoulders are too narrow, the necklines are in the wrong spot, waists are too short. In the end, I'm totally the wrong shape for Simplicity torso patterns. And believe me, I've tried a few.
Simplicity 3688: pants and skirt pattern, 1940's reproduction. (I'm ignoring the blouse for aforementioned reasons.) The pants are wonderful. I have three pairs already. Size 12. I am very long of leg so I add 5" to the length of the 14 size leg length even though I cut the rest out as a 12. I also dig the skirt pattern. I'll do a separate blog post about the skirts later.
First pair were in a blue poly suiting that frayed like mad. It was such a wrestle against the clock to get the bound seams done before I lost too much of my fabric. For that pair, I doubled the height of the waistband. I dig it, but I haven't made another pair like that.
Second pair was another black poly suiting something fabric. A little thicker than the blue pair. I use these as basic office pants . I also made the matching skirt in the same fabric. They are a great basic black pant and I made them long enough so I can wear heels with them. It's rare for me to find pants long enough I can rock heels. It's great to be able to control that. Sewing win! The raw edges are covered with the overlocker stitch on my Husqvarna Emerald 116. Nothing fancy there. I also used a black zip and thread from my stash.
My most recent pair are made from killer red poly suiting. I added fold under cuffs. LOVE THEM. Great colour, cuffs are awesome. Will certainly be doing it again. If I want to add cuffs but wear the pants with heels, I'd have to add about 7-9" to the bottom of the pattern. Sadly, I don't have any pictures of the cuffs! I will have to remedy that shortly. I have worn them for office work, for lecture teaching, and for dancing ceroc!
I can see myself making more and more of these pants. My stash contains the most delicious wool and wool blends in gorgeous tonal greys. Must get them pre-treated and start making before the weather changes.
Knitter. Home seamstress. Dance Teacher.