Wednesday, 11 April 2012

The 'Belleflower and The Beast' Dress

It may be a Beast, but it's definitely a Beauty
So it's a bit belated but as the title might suggest this dress was a beast to make. I decided after seeing all of the beautiful versions of the 02/2011 BurdaStyle dress that other bloggers have made that it was high time I made one for myself. Perhaps that was where I first went wrong....

Firstly, having made a muslin for the bodice, altering the fit and marking the alterations on to the pattern I was pretty happy with what I'd got and set about cutting out the bodice in my fabric. Easy right?

Wrong! Because after all that effort it was pretty late and as I was trying to finish it in time for the Sew Weekly challenge I pushed ahead when I knew I was probably too tired. The major thing I did wrong was I forgot to place my pattern slightly over the fold and at an angle for the center front to eliminate gaping. So I have an additional center seam which was unintentional.

After messing around with that and trying to get the fabric to lay flat below the bust I finally was satisfied with my finished bodice. Stupidly thinking to myself that the hard part was over I began work on the dirndl skirt. I don't know why I didn't listen to the little voice in my head saying 'Don't be stupid, you know gathered skirts never suit you' I choose to blame all of those sewers out in the blogosphere with non pear-shaped bodies tempting me into wasting my time through their pretty finished dresses. I admit it, I was suffering major sewing envy.

So after cutting out my skirt pieces and gathering them using a technique recommended here (and feeling pretty proud of myself for the best and neatest gathering I've ever done) I tried my finished dress on and felt like crying. I looked like I'd put an inflatable ring around my waist! Not a flattering sight. I don't even have any pictures of it as it was so horrifying. So after sulking for a few days I finally gathered the motivation to unpick and remove the skirt, alter it into a six panelled skirt and sew it back on.

And I'm pretty happy with the finished product, it fits nicely and whilst it's not suitable weather to wear it right now I can't wait for summer and the chance to wear it. I admit that the end result is nothing like what I imagined, and I'm still tempted to try the gathered skirt again (glutton for punishment) but with less fabric. But I do like it and I'm now thinking of the endless possibilities that the pattern presents and I can see it easily becoming one of my favourites.

Hand picked Zip!

Self-made biased tape

I also tried out a few new techniques whilst making this, other than the new gathering technique. Firstly I made and used bias binding for the first time, can't believe I've never done that before, it's so easy! I used Tasia from Sewaholic's technique which she used on the Pendrell Blouse. And secondly I did a hand picked invisible zipper which has come out very nice and neat.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Purple Pantone

I've been thinking about how to start this blog for a while now, trying to come up with something snappy and exciting and I finally realised I should just bite the bullet and start writing. So here goes....

This week I'm promising to join in with the Sew Weekly Challenge - Pantone Spring Colour Palette: Spring 2012 Fashion Colour Trends I'm not sure whether or not I like all of the colours for the Spring Palette, least of all the Tangerine Tango but I'm going to give it a go. And I'm going to use one of two patterns I've been drooling over for the last few weeks:

Cute Little Biker Jacket

Pretty Sun Dress
I've been thinking about this for a while, and last week decided that neither of the fabrics I had were really the right colour so along came Dylon, a 40 degree wash and some salt and voila!


Purple, Purple, Purple  : ) : )
The floral print is from an old cotton bed sheet that had been a rich blue and pink but had faded to a yucky pastel colour. It's ideal for the dress, lightweight and floaty but not see-through so I won't need to line it completely. The other fabric is a heavy cotton, ideal for a jacket and again, if I edge my seams properly I probably won't line it to keep it nice and cool for the Spring and Summer.

I'm still undecided on which one to make, but I'm leaning towards the dress as my last two projects have been coats and the dress pattern is nice and versatile. In the meanwhile, I'm still slogging away at my pinstripe Hikaru jacket, which I'm strongly considering naming the Pinstripe Jacket That I Hate to Love...