Sunday, March 30, 2014

A spur of the moment dress

emery dress 5

One of the reasons I love sewing, is that for me it is a kind of meditation. I had a day off from my mindee on Wednesday, and after dropping Sid at school and Ernest at playgroup, I made a little detour on my way home to a local furnishing fabric shop. I'd been feeling down, the extra walking always helps, and I'd heard they had a 50p a yard sale in the remnant room. I wasn't expecting to find anything much, maybe a few pieces for a bag or a skirt, but I was lucky I rummaged through the shelves and found four pieces of co ordinating fabrics in greys and mustards, I also bought a yard off the roll in the same range, and the whole lot cost me £10. I wasn't sure then what I was going to do with them, but when the sales lady asked me if I was going to make cushions, I found myself saying "no, I think I'm going to make a dress." I wouldn't usually tell a sales person in a furnishing fabric store I was going to sew clothing with their fabrics. She seemed nice though, and wasn't at all sniffy when I told her my plans. (She also knocked £1.50 off the bill.)



I started work as soon as I got home. I didn't pre wash the fabric. Now, I'm not much of a pre washer anyway. I only usually pre wash fabric if I expect it to shrink. Furnishing fabrics are often dry clean only, and not made to be washed frequently. Usually with furnishing fabrics I might test wash a swatch to see if there was any shrinkage or fading before deciding if I was going to pre wash the rest of the fabric or have the final garment dry clean only. This time, honestly my priority was to sew. The act of  cutting, and sewing a simple familiar garment with no particular fit issues, for me is a kind of therapy. I can feel myself breathing again as I work through each stage. 




The bodice is the Emery dress bodice pattern. The skirt is a part circle skirt pattern, the same vintage pattern I've used before on my Wool dress and as a skirt for both of my vintage pledge makes this year.
I trimmed the sleeve edges with the same patterned fabric I used for the skirt.
I decided against the collar and the bow for this dress, but I am tempted to make a co ordinating bow belt using Jennifer Laurens tutorial. I think it might be nice to have the option of a bow if I feel like it.



I still have enough fabric left too to make a bag. I think I might be stepping dangerously into that weird middle aged matchy matchy business though...not sure? I am rather smitten though with the Charlie's Aunt bag patterns, and think the remaining fabrics would work well with several of the designs, just trying to decide which one...

As for washing, hmm, I'm not going to try. I will spot clean for now, and if the dress needs a wash I'll try a cold gentle wash with gentle detergent and see what happens.

10 comments:

  1. This is so cheerful. No wonder it made you feel more buoyant. You look lovely :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Rehanon, sewing never fails to cheer me up. x

      Delete
  2. Gorgeous dress!

    Eek at not pre-washing though you are braver then me! I am too messy for spot cleaning so if it can't go in the wash it is no use to me!

    I am hoping to get some therapy sewing in soon!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brave or stupid, I suspect the latter!

      Delete
  3. Gorgeous! I love the trim on the sleeve edges - and it's great that you came upon such gorgeous fabric so unexpectedly :) (I'm terrible for pre-washing pretty much all of the time, it's my secret sewing shame…)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, it was lucky. I spotted some other fabric in there that I didn't buy, but may head back there this week.

      Delete
  4. What a bargainous find. It looks lovely on you. Glad i'm not the only one who has not pre-washing sins. I'm sure if the washing machine wasn't on constantly i'd think about more often. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Amy, I totally agree, my washing machine is always full!

      Delete
  5. Amazing bargains and what beautiful therapy, I love the way I feel after sewing. Cutting, pinning and making (especially with such gorgeous patterns) are just very soothing. Be kind to yourself, almost the end of term xxx

    ReplyDelete
  6. Cute dress! Love the reference to meditation, I agree.

    ReplyDelete

Hi, I love to hear from readers, hate to think I'm talking to myself here, so don't be shy say hello!