So after I had completely finished this dress, I realized that it is my third dress (in a row!) to be green… And, my past two dress posts each were titled after a “lady,” so I could not force myself to interrupt the pattern this time. Wearing this dress truly does make one feel a lady. It is very likely my most extravagant and most prized creation thus far.
As some of you may know from my previous post, I made this dress by adapting a vintage evening gown pattern. Though the pattern sleeves were quite classy, I opted for a younger, sleeveless look. The fabric is from Cali Fabrics, a decently-priced shop with many kinds of materials in a great variety of colors. Funny story– I ordered 5 yards of emerald taffeta, 8 yards of emerald tulle, and 2 yards of cream chiffon…. I made the bodice and realized that chiffon was not working for the kind of bow I imagined. So, I had this crepe-y silk/taffeta (I’m really not sure what it is) sitting beside me, because I had made a muslin with it. As it turned out, I had just enough to make the sash, which ended up being the perfect thing!
Recently, in an interview, I was asked if I have ever failed. While the obvious answer is “yes,” I groped for a noteworthy example. My many sewing endeavors provided me with just the right example. I explained how I have most likely failed many more times than I have succeeded when sewing. And yet, that is how I learn. Without the long list of failures, I would not be the pattern-drafter, fabric buyer, and stitcher that I am today. All this is an introduction to what was perhaps my biggest sewing fail ever… I had completely finished my lovely bodice when I noticed a narrow line of stitches down one of the back sides. I turned the fabric to see the inside. I had serged into my bodice. Ah, it made me sick. After meticulously seam-ripping the serged stitches and trying to patch the tiny holes cut into the fabric, I yielded to what I knew had to be done. The perfectly ironed facing– off. The scrupulously sewn darts– redo. That entire quarter of my bodice– throw away. I cut around the pattern once more, lined up the darts once more, and attached this new and perfect piece to the rest of my dress. But, I can tell you, I am so glad I did!! My beautiful handiwork is now blemish-free. And I learned the importance of careful serging.
Hello, all! Christmas is nearing quickly. I have always loved the idea of dressing according to the holiday– pink and red for Valentine’s Day, red and blue for July 4th, pumpkin for Thanksgiving, green and red for Christmas. But I rarely have accomplished this… for different reasons; sometimes I am too lazy and choose sweatpants over a carefully picked outfit. Other times, I can’t put together the right ensemble. I fixed that problem for Christmas this year with a casual green dress. I made my pattern to match the Lady Skaterpattern which has been so popular lately. I learned a wonderful fact while in the process of making this dress… Serged seams stretch as much as the fabric stretches! Most of you likely have known this for years, but it was my first time to see this amazing phenomenon actually work. Every seam that went into this dress is serged, a first for me as well. Overall, making this dress was quite unproblematic, a nice condition to run into every once in a while. Paired with dark red tights, this dress is my go-to outfit for any Christmas activity!
To make the long story short, this post was due on July 4. Yes, it is mid-September. I’ll just say that I lost a bit of my motivation on this dress after the first couple of hours. Finally, over Labor Day weekend, I made myself labor over this dress until it was finished. I am so glad that I did complete it!
When I first got this fabric from the Mood in New York City, I thought it was the perfect material to use for this dress I had been loving. It is a satin silk. And on top of that, the fabric is the same color as the Statue of Liberty. What could be better than a Statue of Liberty dress made out of New York fabric?!
The design of the Modcloth dress that I copied was so unique but also risky. Making the pattern was definitely a project in itself. But I am glad for the practice. Also, I think this pattern is very flattering! I did have one recurring problem throughout the whole process– puckering seams. Does anyone have any advice for sewing with lightweight fabrics and keeping the fabric from puckering at the seams?
It is Easter once more, and I am so grateful for the opportunity to sing my Savior’s praises today! He is so good. When there is nothing good in me, He is good. When we were dead in our sin, He chose to display his goodness and love by dying on a cross to save us. He is good. We can trust in His promises, because He is good. Need I say it again? Yes, He’s good.
P.S. This is my Easter dress that I made, a copycat of this dress, using this great princess seam tutorial.
Here is a dress that I made, wore once (as a Halloween costume), and immediately refashioned. I love how it turned out! By simply cutting the bodice to a more desirable length and adjusting the skirt length accordingly, I ended out with what is possibly the most comfortable dress I’ve ever made. The fabric is light and airy, but the pattern is feminine and classy; so it’s basically perfect. I added a bit of elastic in the back so that the bodice would be a bit more fitting. I have been counting the possibilities– in the fall with knee-highs and a cardigan, winter with tights and a blazer, spring with a button-up shirt and belt, and summer with bare feet. What do you think? How should I wear it this fall and winter?
If you saw my last post, you saw some of the inspiration I used in making this lovely 1920’s dress. But actually, I ended out being most influenced by these two other dresses I found later.
Look at Lady Mary’s striped dress!
While it is functioning as my Halloween costume, I may be more excited about wearing it afterwards. I have a few ideas for little changes here and there to make it more wearable. It will probably lose the drop-waist…. but you can’t say I didn’t try it out! I’m really glad I made it drop-waisted, so that I could try the technique and the look. I’m just not sold on the look. I guess I’m more of a waist-definition/high-waisted kind of girl. From the beginning, I was planning on using a cream fabric but could not find any. Is that not a shocker?!? No thin, cream fabric in my town. None. I should have used a sheet. Eh, but what am I griping about? I really love this tiny-striped, gray and white fabric. It’s very light, and all the gathers lay well. I feel like I was whisked straight off Downton Abbey when I wear this dress. By the way, I made the pattern, which was very simple, and made the dress in one afternoon. I think it turned out well for such a quickie!
I have finally semi-completed my Mexican embroidered dress right in time for….. fall. There’s nothing like wearing bright flowers and turquoise after Labor Day. Ah well, I am pretty happy to finish my first embroidery project. I said “semi-completed” because I may still add some embroidery at the side seam, right under the armholes. But I was bound and determined to make this blog post before Labor Day; thus it is only partly finished. Though parts of the embroidering became rather monotonous, I really enjoyed making the little pink flower, and I love how the big red rose turned out. The pattern for this dress was hands-down the most simple pattern I have ever drafted. This pattern would probably be cute for other dresses, too– maybe in a more airy fabric? Here are the dresses that inspired me to make mine.
Over the summer, my friend and I have been working on putting together an Etsy store. Finally, we have managed to put a few of our products on, and the shop, Margaret and Alice, is now open! Being tall, skinny gals, we have been thinking, “There needs to be a dress store that caters to our size, because we can never find satisfactory dresses that are long enough….. Why don’t we open one?” Thus, Margaret and Alice is meant to provide classy, modest dresses for the tall and slender. The dresses are inspired by vintage styles, especially from the 1930’s. Peter pan collars, bows, and lace are our signatures. Every dress (or shirt) is carefully handmade by my friend and I. All the patterns we use also are hand-drafted by one of us to perfectly fit a tall, slim lady. We hope to list a few more dresses over the next week or two. In the mean time, if you happen to be thin and long-legged or know someone of this type, please drop by our shop or tell your friends about the chic dresses at Margaret and Alice! Also, any questions you may have I would be glad to answer!
An elegant lace trim top:
A lovely pale blue sun dress:
And a comfy navy blue dress with white stripe detail:
It seems that, when my laundry situation allows, I always choose to wear black and white with a pop of either coral or turquoise. And by turquoise, I mean all bluish, green colors… So I should say teal, sea green, peacock blue, mint, turquoise, etc. Thus, I perpetually look for new opportunities to make a piece of clothing in one or another of these colors. Buying fabric often discourages me, because very rarely do you actually find what you came for. When I found a surprise two yards of black and white print that actually happened to be cute for $4 per yard, I bought it without hesitation. Here is an important bit of information: if you find promising fabric for a good deal, buy it, even though you may not have a plan for it yet. It WILL work out! Any way, in a few short hours, I made this high-waisted, comfy skirt. I am going to try to start wearing dresses and skirts more often; so this casual, practical skirt should fulfill its purpose well.
Here is my lovely lace and blue creation! I made this dress fully out of fabric I already had (the lace was my granny’s). So the total cost was about 3 dollars, the cost of the invisible zipper. This was my first peter pan collar to draft. It was far easier than my last collar, because I actually drafted it correctly. The rest of the pattern is a modification of my polka-dotted dress, which has been perhaps my favorite pattern. The skirt is a pleated half-circle. I guess this dress reminds me of that light blue, white-sleeved dress that Maria wears, because every time I put it on I feel like I came straight out of The Sound of Music. It will be a suitable dress for church, weddings, and the like. This may well be he best-fitting dress I have ever made. Now if that doesn’t convince you to draft your own patterns, I don’t know what does!
Oh, and the lucky winner of the lace infinity scarf is…. lucyducy! Please give me your email address in a comment, which I will not publish/approve, that way I can send you the scarf!