Thursday, February 21, 2013

50s mail order dress

You might recall this pattern from my last post which I purchased on Ebay for a ridiculously small price. I found some lovely green floral fabric at Spotlight for $3.20/m and decided to have a crack at it. Without making a toile (muslin) first. Big mistake!


It came together very easily. The dress is constructed in a really cool way, with two side skirt panels that join to the bodice, and the back and front skirts cut in one piece with the back and front bodices. The fiddliest, most time consuming part was the facings. I hate facings and always avoid them by lining my bodices, but that would not have been possible here- I'd have to line the whole dress and that would have used 6 metres of fabric.

I couldn't really get an idea of the fit until it was about 95% complete, and it was a total disaster. It could not have fit any worse. I didn't take any before pics, but here it is on Jane. It doesn't look so bad from the front (bitch has more in the boob department than I do) but you can see how much it's gaping at the back.


It was obvious that the entire bodice needed almost two inches of length removed from just under the bust, but there was no way of doing that so I did the best I could, which involved taking 1/2 an inch from the shoulder seams, 1/4 inch from each side seam, and making the bust darts slightly deeper. The fit is far from ideal but it looks great from the waist down. You can't really see the waist tie due to the busy-ness of the print, but it's super cute.


I usually steer clear of wrap dresses because I have a very small bust but this one appeals to me due to it wrapping up from the back. 

I will definitely make another one of these, and I'm confident that I can get the fit pretty close to perfect  next time!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

More purchases and a gift!

I recently bought a bulk lot of old patterns on Ebay. There were 37 patterns in all and 3 sewing/ craft books. These are the patterns that I'm keeping:


And I 'won' this uncut 50s wrap dress pattern for $1.20. I can't wait to sew it up!


And heeeeere is a lovely crocheted cardi that one of my lovely flute students made for me. She's 60 years old and is so much fun to teach. A few weeks ago she wore a cute cardi to her lesson and I told her how nice it was, and last weekend she surprised me with this. Isn't that so sweet!? And it goes really well with the dress I was wearing that day! Bonus!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Selfless sewing

So one of my new year's re-sew-lutions (sorry, couldn't resist) was to stop being a selfish old cow and to make more stuff for other people. I've done pretty well so far!

My boy Jimmy started school this week. Here he is, looking adorable and excited on his first day.

I made him a couple of things that he needed for school- a swimming bag (on left) which is lined with waterproof fabric, and a padded library bag. He is super chuffed with his handmade stuff.

Also, I made my first curtains! I bought this fabric about 6 months ago and put off making them because I was scared of ruining them. Then we had a rainy weekend (a bit more than rainy- the whole of South East Queensland was flooded) and my mother in law came over and told me what to do. So I whipped them up the next day in about two and a half hours. I was soooo surprised it took such a short time! I'd envisaged days and days of toiling away at the ironing board and sewing machine. I can't wait to make some more!