Monday, 16 February 2015

In which we discuss colours and head sizes.

I hate pink. I'm SOOO not a floral person. And although I like yellow, I generally don't wear it. So then, you are thinking, WTF?
For the Dog lady sewing challenge, I wanted to make a wearable muslin. I had made a straight-up muslin, but I wanted a quick practice run of the make. I did not want to drop $70 on fabric only to have it wasted. Not cool.
Rewind to two years ago, when my very generous in-laws bought me a gift certificate for a local quilting store. It sat in our "gift card pile" for ages! Not that I didn't want to use it, but rather I got overwhelmed and wanted to make sure I used it wisely. Fast forward to a few weeks ago while the three of us were getting set up for the challenge and I had an opportunity to putter around the store for an hour while the hubs was in a meeting at school. I found this quilting cotton in the sale section and, even though, as I mentioned, I hate pink, dislike wearing florals, and dislike wearing yellow, I had to have it. It was $6 a metre, and it had fruit on it! FRUIT! Maybe this long ass winter made me want to buy something tropical too? So I picked it up, toted it home and got it in my head that if I was going to make a wearable muslin out of this, then I'm going all out and I'm going to make myself look like Malibu F*****g Barbie. :) Don't ask how my brain works. Just nod your head and smile.
What? Me? I'm not socially awkward!
I used Simplicity 1873, just like I did for my birthday dress, only I used the front bodice from view c, without the tabs. I changed the back bodice to be a big scoop because I tried it with my Lilou muslin (that never made it to be a real dress), and I liked the scoop back feature.
I graded out from an 8 at the bust to a 12 at the waist and I used a smaller side seam allowance (3/8" I think?), just to try and give myself more ease than normal. I usually give myself almost zero ease which, oh, I don't know, when I put on a little winter weight *ahem*, can lead to me not fitting into any of my damn clothes, so I figured I'd be kind and try to give myself some extra space. I ended up with just the right amount of ease in my opinion. The dress is fitted without being baggy, which is great! I also changed the skirt to just a plain old gathered one because I didn't have enough to make the skirt from the pattern. I'll probably do the same for my final dress. I also made the same dart changes that I made to my birthday dress, but that was just a matter of tracing off my last pattern.
I made the matching bow belt using Tilly's tutorial, only I made mine a bit wider and the bow a bit bigger. I also made Bluegingerdoll's pin up head scarf, but I have a large noggin and nothing ever fits it properly.  It would have looked pretty stupid if I had worn it for these pictures for you. I can get it to twist once but I can't knot it. I should have known too. I have to buy men's hats lest I get a huge headache, so I should have slashed the pattern. That scarf REALLY would have made me look like Malibu Barbie, so I guess that plan got quashed because of my giant skull. Oh well, what can you do? Next time.
This is the nicest thing I've made to date. I was very careful about pattern matching at the back zip, and due to the fabric width, I had to have a second seam running through the skirt, which I pattern matched really well.
I also added a patch pocket, matching the pattern there. It is just a wee pocket, just enough to stuff my keys into while at work.
Also: check out that kick ass invisible zipper! Amazing!
The bodice is lined with some Bemberg rayon from my stash (Remember how I said my fabric store closed up shop? Yeah, I made out like a bandit with a ton of lining.). 
I also used up some vintage lace hem tape for the hem of the skirt that my cousin gifted me ages ago. It is a little uneven on the inside but on the outside it is even and that is all that matters.
I didn't bother lining the skirt. Instead, at 6:30am the other day when I decided to wear this to work, I decided to make a half slip. Yeah. I figured it would save me from having to line all my future dresses, but clearly I could have planned that out a bit better.
For my final dress, I will try to add some inseam pockets, or if I'm too lazy, I will do a patch pocket, just this time a bigger one. I also need to change the arm holes to be bigger. After wearing this all day I couldn't wait to get it off because it was digging into my pits. But other than that I am really quite pleased with how this turned out. 
And sorry about the less-than-ideal pictures. The snow outside literally is higher than my fence. :| And ain't nobody got time to deal with that. So indoor photos it is. Womp womp.
Can you spot the fence post?
What about you? Have you started your Dog Lady Challenge piece yet?


  1. I'm not a big pink and floral fan but this dress is just adorable

  2. Thank you so much Rachel! Day=made :)

  3. Well... I like pinks and florals, so I most definitely adore this! It looks fab on you and so springy. Great idea to test out your pattern before cutting into your fabric!

  4. Thanks, Tanya! I seriously think my brain needed to see something bright and colourful like this just to remind it that spring will get here......eventually. And am I ever glad I did make a muslin because of all the armpit issues. I just altered the pattern last night and can finally cut into the good stuff next! Hooray :)

  5. This looks like Malibu Barbie in the BEST possible way! Awesome job!