Friday, June 10, 2016

Can't stop sewing


I am really on a roll here. I just can't stop sewing. In the past month, I have made three muslins for myself for shirt-dresses, a blouse that I haven't taken photos of yet, three dresses for my grand-daughter Hannah (no photos of those either)  and this dress which will be finished either today or tomorrow.

This is McCalls 6885, a simple shirt-dress. I sliced the back so that it would have a yoke, added some to the lower back to make a center pleat, altered the pattern with an full bust alteration (using the directions from The dress doesn't have too much shape to it, but it is meant for those hot summer days when we will be in Ontario in July. We don't get heat here in Nova Scotia but in Ontario, they do and summer clothes are quite different for that location. 


I wanted to play with some pattern mixing here. And so I cut the collar, collar band and front placket from a black and white print that I had stashed to make up a poet shirt about 10 years ago. Never going to make that now, so better to put the fabric to use now. When I put on the placket, I thought the contrast was a bit stark and realised that the seersucker may look grey and white, but in reality it has a subtle blue shade to it. My contrast fabric would have been better had I chosen a blue print, but I wasn't going to take off that placket after fastidiously stitching it in place. Once I added the collar, I liked the contrast better (I guess there was more balance with more of the contrast fabric in there) and will finish off the armhole bindings and hem later today.

The collar and band went together really well and I think this pattern, while looking very simple, actually has good bones. I often find that collars are too tall for me and I trim them down. I left this one as is and am really pleased with it. The undercollar is the seersucker and I only interfaced one collar piece and one band piece. I usually interface both but this single application is the perfect weight for this fabric. I am super pleased with how this collar turned out.

Update: just tried on the finished dress before hemming and thought 'this looks too bag-like'. I am too short to carry this off as a dress. So I pinned it up to tunic length and it works. Took the scissors and lopped off 6 inches at CF and CB, cutting a gradual shirt-tail hem at the sides. Much better in my opinion. 

A dress of this style on me would have to have some waist definition, I think. But I love love love the collar on this pattern.


I sewed up Butterick 6208 for grand-daughter Hannah in a purple and white dotted quilting cotton and mailed it to her, so no pictures yet. I raised the opening as I knew it would hit too low for her. She is right on the cusp between girls' patterns and women's and none of the girls' patterns appeal to her. She chose this one and fortunately it came in a range of sizes from size 6 to 14. I cut the size 6 for her and took in 1 inch through the bust as she is a very slender 13-year-old. She told me she loves it.

Her mother hinted broadly that she would love one in the same colour as the pattern illustration, so I just returned from Fabricville where I bought 2.5 metres of cotton lawn in that very shade. This will be a surprise for her, she is such a wonderful daughter that I want to make something for her that she really wants. She is a bit of a fashion plate, despite having 7 kids to look after, and she is dark haired with olive skin so this coral will work on her.

Hopefully there will be some pictures of these garments on real people soon. Getting pictures is a real problem, mainly because I hate taking photos of myself. Yup, self image problems for sure.

Keeping track of the fabric inventory:

Purchased  2.5 metres coral cotton lawn
                  1.7 metres pink cotton gingham

Sewed up  2.5 metres cotton seersucker

Running total for the year - purchased  35.1 metres
                                       - sewn up   29.1 metres

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