I teased you with a little peek at my dress, on Thursday, and a promise to come back with more about it this week. So here I am. I’ve been wanting to get back to dressmaking for a while now, but I couldn’t decide what to make as my first project.
I bought a pattern for a Washi dress last year, thinking it looked nice and simple. It has no zip, which is a big plus, but then I let myself get put off by the rows of shirring elastic in the back of the bodice. I was also worried that it might look a bit shapeless on me and I wanted to love what I made, to keep me sewing.
I’m glad I bought that pattern though, because as a result I found there was a whole world of sewing blogs out there. Many of those bloggers didn’t stick with the so called “Big Four” when it came to buying patterns. The Simplicity and Vogue that I was familiar with, but independent designers who design for different figure types.
These patterns are a bit more expensive, but they come with added benefits. Such as online Sew-A-Longs, which are extremely helpful to beginners as well as anyone, like me, returning from a fifteen year break. I’ve learnt so much over the past week, while sewing up this dress.
I had sewn French seams before, but never in a garment. It just wouldn’t have occurred to me. I used them for the side seams in the skirt, as well as the pockets.
Understitching is something new to me. It makes the bodice lining stay nice and flat and stops it being visible from the outside. It doesn’t show up very well in my photo, but you can see it clearly in Tasia’s pictures and read all about it, if you’re interested.
Here’s the centre front seam in the skirt. This type of seam finishing was familiar to me, although I didn’t know it had a name. I used to sew on my Mum’s old Singer and all it did was the standard straight stitch, no zig zagging the finished seams for me. I think this looks much nicer anyway.
As you can see, from the photos above, I’ve completed the bodice, which is self lined and the skirt, with its pockets. My next job is to attach the waistband, to bring the two halves of the dress together and then tackle the zip. Wish me luck!