Hello sewing chums,
I normally try to post each weekend with an occasional mid-week post but the combination of end of term madness and Wimbledon has meant that I have fallen behind with my self-imposed schedule … now I get why the more sophisticated bloggers schedule posts. Still, I have been active on Instagram and am very pleased with just how frequently I am wearing my own makes these days. Anyway, the only reason I am bothering to give you this little explanation is just in case you were following my progress at the Sew Over It studio to make my Vintage Shirt Dress; I blogged Week One, then Week Two – were you having restless nights worrying about what happened on Week Three? Well fret no more – it’s finished!
I have to admit the final workshop was not a happy experience for me. Following the problems of the previous week I had done a lot of work at home to get back on track and arrived at the class with only the neckline facing, buttonholes and hemming to go. The first task we all had to do was choose fabric for our next shirtdress. Lisa had kindly arranged for each of us to have a new pattern and fabric so that we could make another shirtdress (if you read about week two you’ll understand this). I picked a floral in deep, rich colours which I thought would make a great layering shirtdress in the cooler months (what is the matter with me thinking about autumn at the start of the summer holidays?) but yesterday when I was wearing my Gabriola and thinking about how much I enjoy wearing a maxi, I suddenly realised what a great maxi it would make.
Anyway, back to class. The neck facing went on swiftly and I began to get excited thinking I might actually be able to wear it to see The Importance of Being Earnest later that week (a theatre trip with colleagues to see farewell to a lovely lady who had been at our school for 29 years). Well, that was SO the wrong thing to do. Once I had had that thought, nothing went right. I spent about two hours faffing about with the buttonholes and didn’t get a single one finished. It turned out my machine was at fault but by the time that was established I was in a complete strop and left the workshop in tears. Apologies to Julie if you read this. I must repeat here what a wonderfully patient sewing teacher Julie is.
Another frustrating feature about this is that my own machine had a fault with the button hole function and as I haven’t got it fixed, I couldn’t finish my frock at home. Hoorah for working in a school – I went to the textiles room after work and finished my button holes.
I struggled to get decent photos – tried to get a few in the garden but it was overcast and the others were taken at school on my first day of wearing the dress. It was Prize Giving day (linked to Y13 leavers) so it was actually worn under my academic gown (no photos of that piece of ridiculousness). Thanks to my colleague Liz for taking photos in the library for me.
I will definitely make the dress again – I actually really like it and it fits well after all the alterations but next time I will make it in the right size.
I really must comment on the gorgeous fabric. It’s Liberty Tana Lawn bought in Cloth Kits, Chichester. They always have a good selection of Liberty including some on sale (which this was). The design is Winter Dreams of Spring and if you study it closely all sorts of lovely things come into focus but from a bit of a distance it looks rather subtle. I bought three metres as the pattern suggested I needed and managed to also get out of it a Sorbetto (of course I did) and made a tie for my colleague to celebrate him passing his NQT year.
I haven’t seen the tie on yet as I only gave it to my colleague on Friday – the last day of term – but he seemed pleased with it.
Well, it’s been a picture heavy post and not too many details about the actual shirtdress. I think that’s because the making process was fraught and not a happy experience for me so I didn’t want to dwell on the detail but I am certainly pleased with the outcome.
And so begins, seven happy weeks of holidays with much reading, sewing, running, tennis, cooking and hopefully blogging planned.