Stashbustin’- Burda 02/2011 Dress with A-line skirt and sleeves

Talk about impulse sewing!! Even with a number of projects on my ‘to do’ list, I choose to impulse sew on my last childcare day before uni begins next week. The frock is this one from the Burda website. It was included in a marketing email from Burda on Wednesday. So on Thursday, I purchased, printed and made it – this is it.

I LOVE it! In fact, I love it so much, that if I could marry it, I would!

My husband even said “wow” when I showed him. His response to almost everything I make myself is, “that’s nice”. To which I say, “honey, look closer. This is really hard to do!”. He never really cares, so I’m quite happy with his response for a change.

I LOVE the scoop neck on this dress. I LOVE the little sleeves and I LOVE that the skirt has just the right amount of gathers, not so full that it makes you feel self conscious.

The fabric is a lightweight, textured cotton. It has subtle, almost embroidered looking stripes on it. I actually didn’t quite have enough fabric for the dress, so I hacked into an old frock that I’d made with this fabric last year, but had only worn a few times. I think it’s definitely a wise choice. I love this dress soooooo much more than the other.

I love that I can wear this with a belt or without. I think given my belt obsession, I really need to build my collection. Must head off to the op-shop again….

I think I’ll definitely be making this baby again. There is a little bit of a gape in the neck of this frock, which is possibly because the size of the bodice was a little big from the beginning. I made the smallest size that the pattern came in, but I think next time I’ll take in the centre front bodice by about half an inch. This will also help the arm holes, as they currently sit a little too snug on the front of my arm because the bodice is too big.

As you can see I also choose to insert and invisible zipper at the back, rather than the side. I always have to adjust the back of garments, so this just makes it easier to fit at the end and I don’t think it looks bad at all.

So there, one less piece of fabric in my stash. Unfortunately, I accidentally added another three yesterday – whoops!

My Creative Space – the Pendrell Blouse

This is the second week in a row that I’m showing off a new garment for My Creative Space. Next week university begins, so I don’t think this will happen again for a while.

The Pendrell blouse has been popping up in blogland for a while now, since it’s release last year. I initially didn’t think I would sew this pattern as it calls for quite drapey and slinky fabrics, charmeuse, chiffon, Georgette, crepe de chine, etc. Funnily, I don’t wear a lot of these fabrics when I’m hanging around with the kids at home…. Then Tasia mentioned voile and lawn would also be suitable, so I asked my sister to bring the pattern over with her when she visited recently.

Here’s my version – which is a variation of view B.

As you can see it is a little different from the proper view B, which has two ruffles. I tried to make the second, sleeve ruffle, but it really didn’t sit nicely.

Look at that bad boy! It really sticks out! Clearly, the lack of drape in this voile, does impact the blouse design. You really do need a very drapey fabric to make version B and I suspect version A.

I do like this top all the same, but I am a little concerned about the 80’s vibe from it. The only reason why I relate this to an ’80’s vibe’ is because I own this vintage pattern from the 80’s. Everything old is new again right?

The fit of this blouse is nice, though the head hole could be a little bigger. I don’t have a big noggin’, so you may want to check this part of the fit if you do. Thankfully, as the binding slips under the blouse, it would be quite easy to modify the neck.

Nevertheless, I think I will make this again. I’ll just hunt for some more suitable fabric.

Pattern review is here.

For more creative spaces, you know where to go….

About two dresses – New Look 6002 & Simplicity 2444

It seems I owe my blog a few photos of some of the sewing projects I’ve been working on lately. I’ve actually been flat out sewing these past few weeks, making items for my sister and her little one, and for my neighbour who’s just had a baby. I’ve also been sewing for me – are you surprised???

Last Friday’s wedding provided me with a great opportunity to make a frock suitable for a formal occasion. When I first saw New Look 6002, I fell in love. I was particularly sold on bodice A, the square neck one. It just looks so cute on the pattern envelop. So I purchased some satin back shantung on sale and picked some Anna Maria Horner voile left in my stash for the middle band. Luckily, before I cut the dress, silk dupion went on super sale at Spotlight, so I snapped it up to make this frock.

Here is the dress so far. It is cute and I do like it, but after getting to this stage in construction, I decided the design wasn’t for me. There is currently no zipper in the back of the frock and the hem is pinned. I guess this is part of the problem with making clothes, you don’t get to try on new styles before making them.

Unfortunately, I just couldn’t get over the feeling that it looked a little too ’90’s formal wear’. Two of my friends disagree with this perception of mine, but I still couldn’t get over it.

Pattern review to this stage: The dress came together really well, but there was a lot of playing around with the tucks on the bust to get them to sit right and not bubble. I think proper darts may have helped this. I also turned the pleats on the skirt, pointing them out rather than in as they sat better/flatter that way.

So, in the week prior to the wedding I decided I needed a new dress and looked to Simplicity 2444, which has been on my to do list for a while now. I made this dress out of a lovely, drapey poly rayon blend fabric with a subtle asterisk ‘*’ style design on it.

I love this dress. It’s comfortably and while it is a little demure, it is still stylish. Please excuse the bad photos, it’s a bit gloomy in Sydney today.

Now a few reviews of this pattern noted that the top of the bodice was quite generous and as I was not making sleeves to pull this out, I made a muslin to survey the problem area. From this, I was able to pinch out the excess from this region and when I cut the garment, I re-aligned the centre fold of the bodice. This meant there was a little extra fabric toward the bottom of the bodice, but as I normally grade up the waist of dresses, it was actually helpful.

As you can see from the muslin, I also slightly reduce the neck and arms, as I was really concerned about the wedding falling on one of the really hot, humid days that we’ve been having here in Sydney and I thought this might help. Thankfully, it wasn’t as warm as I thought it would be.

I’m actually really quite happy with this dress and think I will wear it again. The fabric is so lovely and I could definitely wear this to work, if I had a proper job – ha!

Pattern Review available here.

Weddings, hangovers, ups and downs….

The wedding we attended on Friday was a super awesome. I just love going to weddings. I love seeing a side to people that you’ve known for so long, that you’ve never seen before – you know that whole ‘loving someone’ side. We also splurged for the night and got a room in the city, rather than catching a cab home. This meant a little extra partying, which we paid for on Saturday. I didn’t suffer too much of a hangover, but enough of a headache, on a super hot day, to remind me why I don’t party like that anymore.

Now I wish I had a photo to show you the new frock that I knocked up for the event, but I didn’t get time to photograph it at home and I did not remember to take my camera to the wedding. Funnily, we also didn’t remember to pack the kids clothes for their sleep over at my parents house. Just kinda dumped the kids and ran – talk about naughty parenting!

While the party was great and the time off was lovely, the down side to the event is that I unfortunately missed my tutorial registration for university. I didn’t think that logging on to do this the next day would be a problem, but it was. For the three subjects I need to do this semester, I can not attend one tutorial that I’ve had to enrol in. All are outside childcare hours or on days that I have no childcare. This led to a bit of a tanty on Saturday, as I’ll now have to beg each lecturer or tutorial teacher to allow me to fit into an already full class – blah! Going back to uni is stressful enough, without this extra layer of worry. Anyway, life goes on and I’ll just have to roll with it.

Now a photo for this blah, blah, blah post. A picture of all the grandkids in my family. This was taken just before my sister left Australia to go back home to Canada – boo!!!