March 14th, 2020
The top I made in my previous post was a practice run for this dress. I couldn’t be happier with the top, and was therefore very excited to get cracking with the dress version.
Its made from THE softest cotton double gauze I have ever felt. And comes from of course, Merchant and Mills. Not cheap, but then again it is quality stuff. I can’t remember if I bought 2.5m or 3m. I’m pretty sure it must’ve been 3m. This dress uses a lot of fabric!
I had intended for it to be a maxi dress, however when I tried it on at the length I thought I wanted it to be, I was not happy. Looked like a tent!
I thought about it for a day or two and then decided to turnout up. I think I turned it up about 10cm, I doubled the hem over so I had a 5cm or so turn up. And turned it up with the inside outside. Which gives it a lovely contrast border detail.
And now I’m very happy with it.
Please excuse the dusty mirror!
And this fabric is seriously so so so soft to wear, I feel like I’m wearing a cloud. Thinking I might have to get some more…
You can definitely expect to see more of these dresses.
February 7th, 2014
July 2013, don’t be fooled by the amount I’ve sewn so far. I am still nervous, and get sweaty hands and a headache whenever I sit down at the sewing machine. At the moment I’m loving the preparation more than the sewing. I take real pleasure and pride in marking out my fabric and plotting where best to mark the fabric to get the best showing of the pattern that I’m working with.
I’m also experimenting with sizes and dimensions of bags. 19th July 2013 I make a lovely red spotty one which I am initially very happy with but after using once realise its not quite right. Why you might ask? Well the handles are too short and its not got enough depth/width, too narrow. And it really doesn’t work. So I remove the handles, not letting them go to waste and I use the bag for my scrap materials.
This is the rubbish one that didn’t work!
27th July, I alter the dimensions of the bag, making it deeper and the handles longer again, no major changes but it makes a hell of a difference. I’m so so happy with this one. I love the fabric too. I use the beach hut and boat fabric for the inside, however the bag is reversible so this could become the outside, but I love seeing it when I look in the bag.
February 2nd, 2014
I’m now on a roll. I made my first cushion cover on the 10th June 2013, the second one on the 11th June, then a third on the 12th. Forth on the 13th, had a day off on the 14th, then made the fifth on the fifteenth June. Was away for the weekend and back to work on the Monday. I was now officially sewing! I had made things, I had made things that had a function. I turned flat pieces of fabric into something. And boy oh boy was I happy I was so happy, so so happy! Sorry for all the boring pics of cushions, but I’m very proud of them and want to show them off.
Lovely lovely cushions
February 1st, 2014
It was around this time last year, at the age of 41 and 11 months, that i had an epiphany. Whilst toiling away at work one day feeling pretty miserable and wondering how I could maybe find something else to do with my life, an idea popped into my head. I could make my own tops (I can never find exactly what I want in shops so why not make my own) and these tops would be so fab that all women would eventually want one! And I could give up work and have my own fashion empire. Yes dear reader I have a vivid imagination and once I reigned it back in I remembered that I don’t actually know how to sew!
Hmmm could be a problem but only a minor one I thought. So I started looking into sewing classes, unfortunately they were few and far between where I live. I found the nearest thing that looked suitable, a “Pattern cutting and dressmaking” course at my local college. Apparently according to the blurb in the prospectus it was suitable for all abilities. However it did not say “suitable if you have no knowledge whatsoever of sewing or how a sewing machine works or anything at all to do with dressmaking”! I chose to ignore that fact and enrolled. I started the course in March and needless to say discovered it wasn’t for me. Although the lovely course tutor said I would be able to do it I simply felt out of my depth. Plus we were using industrial sewing machines which, given half a chance, wanted to sew my fingers to the fabric. So i decided not to take up any more of her time, or take her away from those who would benefit from the course, and left.
All was not lost though, I discovered that I was happy, very happy, making marks on paper and fabric and sticking pins in things and I was more determined than ever to discover how to make my own stuff. So my lovely Mum lent me her sewing machine to see if I could get on with it. I sat down with it and read the instruction manual, yes thats right, actually read an instruction manual. I’ve never read an instruction manual in my life, but I read this one. And I wound a bobbin (don’t you just love that word?) and threaded the machine. Oh man was I ecstatic!
So it is now June and I buy my first piece of fabric, I’m going to attempt to re-cover an old cushion. After examining my pillow cases I decide thats what I’m going to try, a pillow case type cover. Finally I feel ready to have a go! I don’t really know what I’m doing or how I’m going about it but I’m going to try. I measure the cushion, I mark the fabric, cut the fabric, and finally sit down to sew the fabric. I’m so nervous I am shaking and my hands are getting sweaty. I tentatively start the sewing machine and start sewing. I can’t do a straight line to save my life but its not too far off track, I keep sewing till I’ve finished. And when I finish I breath a sigh of relief. Then its the moment of truth. Will it fit the cushion?