Monday, August 27, 2012

Do you impose sewing deadlines???

Have any of you sewn under a self imposed deadline?  I seem to do it to myself all the time, and I'm not a good boss!

My most recent deadline was to sew a dress to accompany my new red coat.  And the deadline is due to the event that was on on Sunday.

The Rose Seidler 50s Fair is a wonderful, annual, purely vintage festival in Sydney (more on this later on in the week - its worth the wait!), and funnily enough the original coat that I've been re-visiting was worn for the first time at this event last year.  So of course I wanted to finish my outfit to wear to the same event!

But that meant sewing a whole dress, from start to finish, in one day.


And of course I didn't make my job any easier by choosing a pattern that I'd used before, or even one pattern for that matter.  No, I decided to use a modern pattern for the bodice that I then modified, and a vintage pattern for the skirt.

Here is the pattern I decided to use... version C

Version C has a cross over bust detail with pleats in a style that I always like, and cute little cap sleeves.  I decided to modify the pattern so it had a V back instead of the rounded neck back - easy!

But wait - I haven't talked about my fabric yet!

Now, regular readers will know about my love of matchy-matchy, so therefore I adore the idea matching coat linings to dresses like this:

Maximum Matchy-Matchy!

So with the opportunity in front of me, how could I resist making myself a dress out of red polka dot satin!!!

Right, so because my fabric is satin and therefore flimsy, I decided to interline the bodice with a light cotton to give it some... robustness for want of a better word.  The bodice goes together in two separate sections that look like this:

The fronts at the front, the backs at the back

It was a fairly straight-forward sew to this point even though I had an extra thickness of fabric, but this is where it started to go off track.

I put the bodice on my dress form and noticed that the front section fell straight down from the boobs, rather than curving under the boobs.  So I added a dart so there was some shape:

 I'd say the pattern was drafted for people with small boobs...

Then there was the issue with the cap sleeves.  As per the pattern illustration (which lie - as previously established) I expected the sleeve to be angled downwards, but no:

Wing sleeves = yuck! 

And due to the fact that the sleeve is inserted with the lining in a single step (its then turned through to create one single piece for each side - really easy construction!) I was not going to unpick the thing and start again... so I decided to fix it like this:

See the little tuck with the pin?  I replaced the pin with a couple of stitches

So then it came time to attach the skirt, and due to the fact that I cut it out in a hurry (ie, minimum measuring maximum guessing) and had added darts to the bodice, I was pleasantly surprised to find that it fitted perfectly AND the bodice darts matched a seam on the front of the skirt!!!  Total fluke!!!

A very happy coincidence! 

And then I sat up half the night re-hemming the coat (did a crap job the first time), sewing on buttons, and doing some handsewing on the dress.  And I did it, I got there, I made a dress in a day!!!

And here it is - the moment you've all been waiting for - THE UNVEILING OF THE WHOLE OUTFIT!!!

Yep, I went with the lips buttons, even though they got the least number of votes!
And the coat does have large shoulders, and I've put shoulder pads in, but I'm thinking that the ones I've used were too flimsy and it needs heavy duty ones...

I just love the shape of this coat, its really feminine, and I love the bigger collar


This is so cute I could die!
And how AHHHMAZING is the handbag!!!

I like the V back much better than the rounded neck look

So, what does everyone think?  I love it, and the dress is really comfy and the satin suprisingly doesn't crush easily!  Hooray!!  

Now to decide on my next project... hmmmm.....



  1. Looks great! Love the matchy-matchy.

  2. I love the way the coat turned out! And the polka dot lining/dress adds a whole new level of wonderful to the outfit!!

  3. Wow you wouldn't know the bodice was a modern pattern, the dress and coat are really fabulous!

    1. Thank you! The reason I picked that pattern up in the first place was I thought the bodice was vintage-y enough to be usable. And I suppose it shows that some styles never go out of style :)

  4. Hello! I just clicked over from Gertie's blog. Your stuff is awesome! And wow! This set is amazing! I love how glamorous the whole vintage matching is.

    1. Hi Lexi - isn't Gertie wonderful!

      Thanks for the fabulous feedback :) I love matchy-matchy (if you can't tell!) and I think it does make the whole ensemble more glamorous and put-together :)

    2. Totally. I usually only get around to making one piece from these kinds of vintage patterns, but you've inspired me; I'm going to plan my first matching set! x

    3. Hooray! You must email me a picture when you're done!! xxx

  5. Your bag!! Is it a new one or vintage?? Oh I would DIE to get one!

    1. Hi Amber - it's a vintage bag, given to me by a friend of my Mum and Dad's. it was his mother's and she loved it. I do too :)

  6. I loooove that dress! Could you please share the pattern number? I can't quite see it and I can't find anything like it! Love the cross over bust :)

    1. I will have to have a look in my patterns when I get home - It isn't clear on the front of the envelope...

    2. Thanks so much! I tried googling for every combination I thought would work teehee but no luck :( Have a wonderful holiday!