That is- the color “wine.” Making this dress was my first experience with a vintage pattern. With double darts, a faux button-up front, and the fit-and-flare style, this pattern is one of my favorites, even among the ones I have drafted. I am amazed how well it fits! What could be better than a dress that fits perfectly? Fabric for $1 a yard, of course! And wine-colored rayon challis at that, which is the color I have been loving for this fall and winter (please don’t call it maroon… that takes away from the whole elegance of the look) and my favorite material of all time. To top it off, I used a lace collar from a garage sale, which I have been saving for the perfect project. This ought to be just the dress for casual occasions throughout fall and winter. A cardigan will layer nicely over it, or tights under it, and boots beneath it! Also, for anyone wondering, my new (vintage) sewing machine stitched up this dress like a dream.
I just bought an a old Singer 301 sewing machine! For 70 bucks, I got the machine, the cabinet it was in, and various accessories and feet attachments. This entire summer, even with kicking off a business, I have been without my own sewing machine. My Brother sewing machine decided to stop working after two years of hard sewing; so, I was forced to borrow my mother’s machine regularly over the past few months. But, yes, it has paid to be patient in the search for a new one. I was on the verge of paying another $125 for a Brother just like what I had before, when I stumbled across this perfect old-timer on Craigslist. Reading up on the Singer 301, I found that it runs on gears instead of a belt drive. This makes it a dependable machine that will last through years of rigorous stitching. Another thing that makes me smile when I look at this machine: no plastic. It’s all metal, making it a 16 pounder. It conveniently snaps out of the cabinet for easy portability. But, the cabinet makes for a great sewing table in my room (not to mention a cute addition of furniture). This darling machine works perfectly, sewing even stitches quietly and smoothly. In case you can’t tell, I’m sold. Well, actually, it’s sold…… to me! Hip hip hooray!
Perhaps the first project this machine will get to make under my guidance will be this sweet vintage pattern. Generally, I don’t use store-bought patterns; but seeing this one in an antique store, I just couldn’t pass it up.
I think this is the first time I’ve ever refashioned my own fashion (i.e. something I made). I made a maxi-dress last spring which was cute until I washed it…. it shrunk. Here it is before it shrunk:
Then it was far too tight for my liking. But I wore it last summer, belting it up to a shorter length. This year, I couldn’t even do that. So, I made it into a loose peplum top, which is splendid for hot summer days. It was super easy, too; that is, if you have a sewing machine that functions properly. Has anyone ever had the trouble of your thread breaking stitch after stitch? I’m legitimately asking, because I need some serious help! What’s even weirder is that my machine and my mom’s machine is doing the exact same thing. We’ve checked the tension, re- and re-threaded the bobbin, and tried different thread options. Any suggestions? Also, with my sick sewing machine, I refashioned some green trousers into shorts. This project would typically be a twenty minute project instead of one and a half hour project. But I love them! They may even have been worth the extra hour and ten minutes. Oooh, and the trousers were about 2 bucks at a garage sale and were in great condition. I am happy with my new refashioned outfit but less than happy about my machine.