Whoops, a week and a half has gone by without a new post! I’m still getting used to writing these weekly and I’ve just learnt how easily time can run away from you. In a way it’s not been such a bad thing. Now it’s easier to post on a Tuesday like I wanted to, and I’ve finished my blue dress which I was going to write about a couple of weeks ago.
I wasn’t clever enough to leave the paper pattern pieces attached to the material which meant the first thing I had to do was to figure out what everything was. Considering it was nearly two years ago that I cut it out it was not an easy task!
The reason the paper pattern wasn’t attached was because I was trying to make the dress in a hurry so I hadn’t pre-washed the fabric. I didn’t have time to make it in the end so I washed the pieces post chopping them out. Thankfully they hadn’t frayed much at all, but it did mean I had lots of very wrinkly pieces to sort out. Lesson learnt, past me. Lesson learnt.
I could easily recognise the sleeves, bodice front, bodice back, front facing, waistband, and sleeve cuffs. I also figured at least some of the curved pieces had to be the collar but I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why I had cut them out like that. The rest was a mystery.
While ironing I realised all three curved pieces were for the collar – the two smaller ones needed to be sewn together to make the underside. I ended up ditching that idea and cut out another collar piece from some scraps from the female prisoner dresses I made.
I think I originally designed the dress to be a shirtfront with slightly puffed sleeves. It’s been a hot summer here which nudged me into deciding to ditch the sleeves and bind the armholes instead. I also decided on just five buttons – more on that in a moment- rather than buttons the whole way down. Other than that I think I pretty much made the dress how I planned to back in 2016.
I noticed that I didn’t have any pockets so I cut out some inseam ones from more of the stripy fabric. I used my pattern weights for the first time for these pockets. They were brilliant!
In the end I decided to add patch pockets instead of inseam ones. I cut the new pockets out from one of the sleeves. I used the other sleeve to cut out the bias binding.
The only mistake I felt like I made with this dress was trying it on to check the trimmed armholes AFTER I stitched on the binding. The dress was gaping a little so I needed to take it in at the side seams. I should have taken off the binding before taking it in, but I was too lazy so I stitched a little side dart binding and all.
A bonus with the binding was I was able to use one of my binding makers for the first time! My mum gave me a set of four for Christmas. It’s lovely having binding that matches perfectly.
As I mentioned above I decided on having buttons to the waist rather than the whole way down the dress. I made that decision because I found five not quite brassy, not quite silvery metal buttons in a tin of buttons that my grandma gave me. By this stage I was already calling this project my Ravenclaw dress, so those buttons were absolutely perfect.
I love this dress so much. It’s really comfortable I barely want to take it off. It does hold on to cat fur like you wouldn’t believe but I’m used to being covered in fur so that doesn’t bother me. The pockets are big enough to fit an A6 visual diary in too which is superb! If I can find the paper pattern I used I’d definitely make another one. I reckon I’d try it with buttons the whole way down the skirt next time.
Well, that’s the blue dress! I hope you like it too.
Until next time! xx
I'm Beth the human behind Little Grassbird. Welcome!