I always find the return to work after having time off a little difficult, I guess most people do, but I think it was especially difficult this week after taking a week and a half off to try and get some time away from figures …
O hushed October morning mild, Thy leaves have ripened to the fall; Tomorrow’s wind, if it be wild, Should waste them all. (Robert Frost) October has brought with it the falling leaves, and soon my gold and russet backdrop will make way for bare branches …
As Mr Awesome and I are enjoying a week off work with no other plans than to try to find some space in our heads for something other than our jobs and so to enjoy those things that we wish we had more time for, I have indulged in lots of making. I have done quite a bit of knitting (though progress on the 4-ply colourwork sweater is still slow, it’s a project I want to have finished for a particular occasion in mid-October) and some sewing, and I hope to find time to get some polymer clay out before the week is up (but how quickly the time flies when you are having fun!)
One of the first things that I decided to try was to make a dress from a length of lightweight checkered white, grey and pink fabric that I had picked up from the local fabric store. The construction of the fabric is a quite like a seersucker, but it’s not cotton; or at least it is not 100% cotton.
Anyway, I thought it would make a nice dress: not too bold so perhaps suitable for the office, or for an afternoon out. it’s a bit of a Frankenstein of a dress as I put it together using two different patterns: The top part of the dress is a New Look pattern (6106), and the bottom half is another New Look pattern, (6457), which is actually a skirt pattern. Well, actually, only the back of the skirt is from that pattern and I modified another piece to make the front of the shirt without any darts or pocket detail, so I drew that bit up myself.
The pattern was a combination of all different bits and pieces by the end of it, but I got the resulting shape that I was hoping for.
The bodice of the dress is fitted but not tight or restrictive, and I opted for more of an A-line skirt than the full-skirted version that the dress pattern called for to take some of the fabric out and hopefully result in something a bit more casual and easily wearable.
I decided to use a little lace collar that I had picked up on eBay on a whim.
It was very inexpensive (about £1.50) and I thought that if I bought it I would be able to find a project to attach it to! I had to adjust the neckline of the dress pattern to give a resulting neckline that the collar would fit around, as the original was cut far lower and so the collar would have been too small I’m really happy with the result (though I either need to find a lower-cut top to go underneath or a little cardigan, as I fear it will be too cold to wear sleeveless now that Autumn has descended).
I added some pearl beads to the attached collar in a matching pale pink, and attached these beads through the collar and to the main dress to both stop the weight of the beads from distorting the collar, but also to help the light and decorative lace from raising up with movement and to make sure that it always lays perfectly.
The collar is attached between the main fabric on the outer and some cotton bias binding to finish the inside of the neck which gives a neat and comfortable finish.
I also attached a strip of bias tape to the underside of the hem, in a pale pink. It’s a tiny detail, and one that only I, or anyone who happens to catch a glimpse of the underside of the skirt in a breeze will ever notice, but the fact that it is there just makes me happy, because I wanted this particular dress to be all about the tiny details and a good basic fit.