My Hawthorn dress was finished this afternoon, and as it's a nice day, I thought I'd take some photos of it in the garden. I'm getting a bit tired looking at that roll-top desk, but there's plenty of room at it, even if the light isn't very good. But I'm going to try and take more of an effort with my photos.
Anyway, back to the dress. The fabric is cotton poplin from Textile Express. It's called Floral Cherries, and is £5.50 per metre. I bought 4 metres, but only used 3 metres.
I really wanted to make it with the short sleeves from Version 1, but I was having trouble with the fit. I made a toile, but the sleeves felt too tight under the arms. So I had a look in Fit For Real People, and also googled it. I found this article on Threads Magazine's website which made a lot of sense.
I had originally made a size 0 at the shoulders because I have a narrow back, and graded out to a size 4 at the underarms. This was still too wide across the back, so I took 1 inch of the centre back, which looked fine on my toile, but was too tight at the underarm once the sleeves were in. So I made a size 4 toile taking 3/4 inch off the centre back, and raising the bottom of the armscye 1/4 inch. Then I cut a size 6 sleeve (for luck), and it worked! I was afraid it might be a bit too wide across the centre back, but as you can see in the below photo, it fits perfectly!
This is totally beside the point, but look at my hair! I dyed it myself last Saturday. I hadn't dyed my own hair for years, I always go to the hairdressers but the red dye fades so quickly, and I can't afford to go every four weeks. I love how it turned out, and it wasn't as big a faff as I thought it would be, although my bath did look like a crime scene at one point! Anyway, back to the dress (again)...
I absolutely love the collar, and my buttons are flower shaped with a mother of pearl look.
I did have a bit of a disaster though. I was finishing the edge of the facing on my overlocker, and below left is what happened to the neckline curve. I know; it looks like the dog ate it - and I don't even have a dog! So as soon as that happened, I went onto ebay and found some seam binding here. This stuff is great, it's really easy to use: just fold it in half, iron it, pin it around the edge of the fabric and stitch in place. Plus, I think it looks nicer than the overlocked edge.
I'm always amazed at how quickly other folks can make a garment, then I realise how many alterations I have to make, so I thought I do a list of my mods for this:
- Size 4 at shoulders, graded out to size 6 at waist - then taken in considerably at the waist because it was too big (when will I learn!).
- FBA of 1/2 inch.
- Bodice shortened by 2 cm.
- 3/4 inch removed from centre back.
- Used the length for the largest size for the skirt.
- Shortened the sleeves by 1.5 inches as on the sewalong.
- Put pockets in the side seams of the skirt.
I've been off work this week on leave, so have been making this and also tackling my alteration pile (one and a half things to go!). Here's my top tip for taking on the alteration pile. Take aforementioned pile, and place everything over the back of the chair at your sewing machine. Every time you sit down at your machine all the garments will fall on the floor. This will get really old really quickly, therefore sparing you on to actually do said alterations. :)
Have a great weekend,