Saturday, 2 January 2010

Simplicity 3774 The surprise sewing holiday dress

Still no camping. Instead I sewed a dress that has been on my mental list for about 12 months, what a terrible, tough time I am having :)!
The pattern is Simplicity 3774. I first made this dress 2 years ago, as a Christmas dress to wear to my sister's. I liked it so much, that I straight away made another one with sleeves. The version with sleeves wore out, and the sleeveless version is now at house-dress only status, so I wanted to replace them, as I always felt good in the previous dresses from the pattern, and as I recalled, it fit well with only minor adjustments.
Last year I bought some print eyelet fabric that I really like from Fashionista Fabrics. I bought just enough, as it ended up about $AUS18 per metre, and am quite amazed that I have actually made the exact garment for which I purchased the fabric. (I just looked at Melody's site, and she still has some of this, and it is now on sale :(. Maybe I need some more for a blouse...
Unfortunately, this dress was not a smooth sailing project. First was my fault. I had a day of indecision. I had originally planned to fully line the dress with a light olive -green voile, but as this would have used up my last piece of this fabric, decided that I would rather save it for a possible blouse. Instead I used a peachy silk/cotton voile that I bought at Greenfield's in Sydney. It took me about 2 hours to decide on this, mostly because the eyelets in the outer fabric show the lining, and I had to keep holding up different fabrics to look at the effect. Having plenty of time for sewing seems to slow me down.
My next indecision involved piping. I made some variagated red piping, but then thought that as my green voile was such a good match, that this would look better (also, I had used the red piping on my previous version of the dress, and it felt a bit repetitive). I doubled the voile so that the perle cotton filling in the piping would not show through.
After this, I expected easy sewing. I read my review on pattern review (one of my first) and made the fitting adjustments I had mentioned. Unfortunately I had not mentioned raising the neckline, and the dress was too low for my personal comfort level. I then tried 3 different fabrics for the tucker. I am happy with the green voile again. I hope there is enough left for a blouse now.
Other minor issues included two attempts at the zip, and a 3 hour hunt for said zip that involved sorting out half of my fabric cupboard, but I do have some success to report.
I almost managed to make a hem on the lining skirt with my rolled hem foot. Only a few spots failed. I followed Elizabeth's instructions, sewing at the pace of a snail, and can see some light at the end of my rolled hem tunnel. The lining looks quite good with a doubled rolled hem IMO.
I have also cut out some calico for a toile of a Chanel inspired jacket, and am planning some work trousers for my daughter. I am secretly hoping that it rains for days.


KID, MD said...

Beautiful!! The fit is amazing and that fabric was worth every penny. Lovely combination with the green voile.

Shannon said...

What a pretty dress! The colour and the shape is very flattering on you. However, it does drive home how annoyed I am with it being -10C here right now. :)

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

This is a beautiful dress on you despite all of the "slowdowns". I have some of that fabric and have wondered what to do with've inspired me to think of it differently! And I hope you get your wish!!! ;)

Sue said...

That is a very pretty dress. I love the piping finish and must work on learning this skill.
The rain we have been having lately is amazing! Good luck with the camping...

Mary Nanna said...

very pretty indeed - everything from lining to piping to shoes matches beautifully! That dress looks perfect for your climate, it would be great for our hottest days here.. hmm.. I think I'm hatchin' a plan.

Carol said...

I love the dress, it's very, very pretty. Today I have had 3metres of silk tweed laid out on the dining table ALL DAY. So far I have pinned and unpinned three different patterns because I keep changing my mind. I've done three loads of washing and come back to it and still can't make up my mind, which is why I am now looking at your blog. You've inspired me to want a pretty dress now, so the tweed can go away until later!

Sharon said...

Great looking dress and are they the shoes you purchased recently?