Hello there! Hope you've been having a good week. I very unexpectedly took a turn this past week into sewing clothes. I have not tried to follow a pattern for sewing something I'd wear since 7th grade Home Economics (I've said it before, but it bears repeating; Home Ec and Typing- yes, it was typing, not keyboard, but the same skill applies and for that I am grateful daily- were two of the most useful classes as far as life skills learned goes.) It was seeing various instagram posts of artist Jen Hewett's versions of this pattern that got me started. Seeing this one that one sealed my fate. It didn't take long before I started linking around, seeing more, and ordering a pattern for myself.
#100actsofsewing started off as a personal project for artist Sonya Philip, a challenge to herself to make 100 dresses in a year, but now it has become something so much more, a movement that so many others are taking part in, and hashtagging 100actsof sewing on IG, Facebook, Flickr and more. You can read all about Sonya's mission statement here.
Here's my first go at the pattern. I used muslin fabric to practice on, and chose not to try the sleeves for this round. I did do the pockets and changed up the neckline a little. I was trying for more of a boatneck then the scoop of the pattern, but misjudged that and when I tried it on I was choking, so had to put a slit in the center. I made it work. It's not the prettiest execution, but it's wearable and that's just plain old fun! My ability to whip it up in an evening is a testament to the friendliness (read=easy) of the pattern. A perfect re-introduction to sewing.
After feeling that makers high, I headed to JoAnn's to pick out some fabric for another go. I usually don't find it hard to visualize something, but I sure did this time. I really struggled with picking out fabric for a dress in mind vs. a quilt say. I wondered if it was all me, or that JoAnn's might not be the best place to find the selection I was hoping for. I think it's a bit of both in hindsight. I still am not sure about how I feel about what I picked, and I've almost completed it, ha! Here it is:
It's a Denyse Schmidt cotton from her quilting collection for JoAnn's. I absolutely love all Denyse Schmidt designs, be it quilts or fabrics. My uncertainty about the fabric is not about the fabric, but the use of it for this dress/blouse. I haven't hemmed it yet, or put on the pockets because I'm not sure how long I want it to be. I did include the sleeves this time though, and am pretty pleased with them. A friend stopped by yesterday as I was wearing it to determine any altering needed, and we discussed how I might like it just because it's something I made, like "children will eat their veggies more willingly if they've helped grow them" concept, vs. a cute dress. Meaning, she wasn't a huge fan haha. I'm still not sure, but I will definitely wear it after doing all that work, (and take a picture to show you of course!) I guess the goal would be to make something I'd want to buy if perusing the racks at a clothing store. Granted, this dress looks much better on than on the hanger above, but I'm not sure I would give it a chance in the dressing room, ya know?
But hey, one thing I'm not is a quitter. I'm also a big believer in learning by doing, so I'm going to try another one, this time with this gorgeous puce green colored linen. It's one of my favorite colors, (sometimes I think that name works perfectly, in a juxtaposition, clashing kind of way, and sometimes I think the name sells the color short, but that's a topic for another day) and who doesn't love linen?
Ok, wish me luck, I'll report back with continued adventures in sewing my own clothes soon!