Sunday, March 31, 2013

Sadie the Cleaning Lady frock

I got this old pattern in a bulk lot from Ebay and decided to give it a go because I've been wanting to make a shirt dress for a while now. The measurements on the pattern envelope just happened to match my weird proportions (small bust and small hips, with comparitively large waist and bottom) perfectly, because it's a teen pattern. So I have the measurements of an undeveloped pre-teen. Great :/


I used this stuff that I bought from Spotlight for $4/m 2 years ago. I originally thought it was drill as it has a kind of drilly look to it (diagonal weavey-type thing) but it's far too soft to be drill. So I have no fecking idea what it is but it was super easy to sew with.

I basted the whole thing first in case I needed to take it in or let it out, but I was happy with the fit. I probably should have used the 6 buttons it told me to use instead of 4 but I liked them spaced out like this.


It's a tiny bit tight across the back but I can deal with it. I don't like the sleeves at all. Next time I make it I'll put some cute puffy sleeves on it so it looks less like a cleaning woman's uniform.

Stupid derpy derp face

It's super comfy and I really like it, despite its hideous dagginess. Next I'm going to make the long sleeved version and add some pockets.

This cost about $9 including the buttons, which I purchased specifically for this dress.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Op shop goodies

I popped into Lifeline last week and came out with these goodies for $11.

6 metres of what feels like very fine lawn. Or maybe something synthetic. Who knows, I'm hopeless with fabric identification! It has a lovely drape and the backgroud colour is lovely.


4 metres of some kind of cotton. Voile, maybe? Not my colour scheme at all, but as if I could pass it up at $4!


A really cool cushion cover for my music room.


I haven't done any sewing since my Pastille dress. I'm not quite sure what to make next. Maybe Gertie's shirtwaist dress? Anyway, it won't be for some time as I'm soooo busy lately. I teach all day every Saturday. I have an orchestral gig all day this Sunday and I also had a gig with my big band yesterday. The venue wants us to play there once a month, which is hugely exciting!

Here we are- that's me in the front!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Colette Patterns Pastille Dress

Things on the sewing front have slowed down quite a bit for me lately. A couple of weeks ago I was offered my old flute teaching job at a local private school, and even though I didn't want to work five days a week until Elizabeth is at school (another two years away!), the job was too good to pass up. I've been pretty stuffed to say the least, having to take 3 kids to 3 different locations then drive all the way across town to work, then to 3 different pickups in the afternoon, do washing, make dinner, do my workout, band rehearsals and gigs...gah! It doesn't leave me much time or energy for sewing. But I'm definitely going to make sure I complete one project per month.

I bought myself the Colette Sewing Handbook a while ago and immediately wanted to make the Pastille dress, but of course a hundred other projects got in the way. After doing a bit of research it became apparent that it's a bit tricky to fit, so I made a bodice muslin and I'm glad I did! So many bloggers reported that the back has about 1-2 inches of extra length and I found that to be the case. When I tried it on I looked like a hunchback!

I decided to use some really awesome Michael Miller quilter's cotton that I've been holding on to for almost two years. Now, I know that there are some people who believe that quilting cottons should not be used for clothing. I am not one of those people. I love the fun prints and the structure that the heavy cotton gives to dresses. I wouldn't use it for a blouse though- too stiff!

I cut my dress with many pattern alterations. As well as removing a 1.5" pleat from the back, I removed an inch of width from the front (I've finally decided to do this with every pattern because everything I sew is too big across the top of my body). I left out the tucks on the skirt because I couldn't be arsed with them.
I did a small bust adjustment, and cut the skirt in a size 2 and graded the waist up to size 2 while cutting the rest of the bodice as a size 0. (What the hell does that mean, anyway? 'Size 0'. Zero means nothing. You can't be 'size nothing'! And what if you are a size XXS- does that make you a size -2???)

As soon as I read the pattern instructions I decided there was no way I was going to use facings. I hate them and always line my bodices instead. I also decided to line the skirt while I was at it, so that I can wear it with tights in winter. The whole dress is lined with some dark blue slippery stuff that I got from Fabric Frenzy for $2.95/m.

The dress came together really easily but there were a few fitting issues. I discovered that the extra inch I added to the waist needed to come off, which is weird because I went by the measurements on the pattern. I also had to lengthen the back skirt darts to accomodate my booty. I had some problems with the bust darts which I haven't resolved, and the shoulder seams need half an inch taken off them, which I couldn't be bothered doing once I'd sewing the lining on.


This is probably my favourite dress that I've made. I think it really suits my shape, especially the neckline which is super flattering. The colours are SUPER FREAKIN' AWESOME and it looks so cute with a belt.

You can see that the fit of the bodice is not perfect but that's the beauty of a busy print!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

This has nothing to do with sewing, but...

I hope you will indulge me while I show off my new hair colour, glasses, dress and shoes.

I've had red hair for 2 years and needed a change. Besides that, the upkeep of very bright red is a royal pain in the ass, not to mention all the precautions that need to be taken so that I don't stain the towels/ pillowcases/ bathroom vanity. So I decided to go back to brown, but a dark brown. I love it.


I also got new glasses. I'd been wanting new ones and then Jimmy accidentally whacked me in the head and broke my green ones and I was happy on the inside because that gave me a reason to buy new specs. I didn't really want black ones but I really like the shape of these.

Here I am tarted up last night to go to a dinner party at a friend's house. The dress is the Coach Tour Dress from Modcloth. I ordered a red one and this one which is called Spearmint. I think they were on sale for about $30. They were a heck of a lot shorter than I thought they'd be. I wore them to work with tights and flats and my boss didn't send me home to get changed so it's all good. 

The shoes are Pinup Couture, a find on Ebay for a bargain price. They are soooo gorgeous! They are similar to TUK shoes in both style and fit.