Sunday, 14 January 2018

First Dress of 2018

Yesterday I felt like I had been a bit unproductive, it was Saturday and we are allowed to laze around a bit if we have been working but I just felt like I have recently been browsing the ideas of others online and not getting enough done.  Don't get me wrong I love to see what everyone is up to on their blogs but sometimes it does run over into time that should have been spent making.

Not everyone likes to make things but if you do you will know that you often feel better after you have just completed something, big or small it doesn't matter.  Personally I often feel more relaxed as well while I am sewing, unless of course there has been a major disaster involving lots of unpicking then it can have the opposite effect.

So where am I going with this?  Well I had thought at the start of the year that I would not need to make clothes as I have enough, of course that may be true, but as someone who likes a bargain a lot of them have been charity shop finds or dresses I have made to go out in. ( I hardly ever go out in the evening!)  This means that not everything goes, or I have had things years and I don't like getting rid of perfectly good items whether I wear them or not. I don't like waste and I won't overpay for items, so while there are items in there that I love there are also lots of blah items.  In light of this I have decided that this year I will continue to sew garments for myself with a view to moving towards a mostly handmade wardrobe.  I say mostly because I do love my jeans and sometimes you just get a pair off the shelf that fit perfect, also I have a favourite, super warm winter coat at the moment that I love.  This coat was shop bought and I don't want to put the restriction on myself that I can't get something if I truly love it.    I will aim to make things I love even if the fabric is a little more, enjoy the process and then actually wear mostly 'me made' rather than the small selection I wear at the moment.

First up for the year is this dress I made last night, I already had the fabric it was bought early December from Minerva crafts, I can't find the link to the actual fabric but it's probably still on there.  This dress is a comfy stretch fabric and will be to wear for work...
It was quick to make up, a straight forward shift shape and that is basically a long fitted t-shirt shape.  I cut around another dress of mine to get the shape for the body, then used a sleeve from my t-shirt pattern that I made for the sleeves.  I just had to make the armholes wider when I cut out the body.
This dress is a favourite of mine and I am going to replicate it exactly at some point this year when I find the right fabric.  It was bought from Matalan a few years ago. (Not a few about five, ha!)
This is the reverse of the fabric and I couldn't make up my mind when I first bought it which side to use, I think you can use any, with the side in the above image having a more wrinkly texture.

Looking at the top of the dress it is just a t-shirt but longer, I tried it on last night then had to take  a little more out of the sides to make it a bit more fitted.

  There isn't a picture of me in at as I am busy today so just quickly popped it on the mannequin so she could model for me.  It will be great to layer up and comfortable too so there may be a few more along this line.  I will road test how often this one gets worn first.  

Later this week I may compile a little list of things I need for my wardrobe, I know others do this with their sewing but usually I tend to just pick up whatever fabric grabs my eye then think about it later.  A little planning wouldn't do me any harm, being a jump in kind of girl.

This year I want to try and read a bit differently too, I do generally try to choose a variety but it is good to have recommendation so any ideas are welcome.  I like all kinds of fiction except horror and slushy romance, I don't mind if there is a love story in there as part of the story but not just that on it's own I like a bit of intrigue.  After watching The Handmaids Tale on TV and then more recently Alias Grace I have ordered a few Margaret Atwood from the library.  This week I read Stone Mattress , a collection of short stories, I enjoyed a few but not all and I am about to start The Heart Goes Last.
I also read a book on quantum physics 'How to teach your dog quantum physics'  I bought this for my son and he never read it, I started it once before and got lost then forced my way through it a week ago.  I have to say I am not much wiser other than knowing a few terms, maybe that was trying to broaden my reading a bit too much.  Maybe if I had understood it correctly I could have gone off walked the dogs, completed the ironing and cooked the Sunday lunch then made it back to this spot at exactly the same time, alas no, I will have to go and do it all in time as I know it ;)


  1. That is a very wearable dress with thick tights and boots and a cosy cardy. I am mostly me made now but I did just buy a navy cardy today because I have wanted one for ages and once (and I mean once) I made a black cardigan for myself and it was the most boring thing I ever slogged my way through and I am not about to repeat that! I saw a cosy cardigan in the weird fish sale in a garden centre for £20 and I bought it just like that! Happy making Jo x

    1. I know what you mean, some things that are every day items don't always feel very exciting to make. Enjoy your new cardigan.x

  2. Looks like a lovely new dress for the new year!

  3. That looks like a lovely dress with an interesting pattern. I'd wear it! I am hoping to make jeans this year, it is something I have been working towards. All my top bar one are me-made, which pleases me no end. I am not a size that easily fits into charity shop finds unfortunately. I enjoy Margaret Atwood books very much although I generally prefer her older books. Enjoy reading yours x

    1. Thank you Christina, you have made some lovely tops last year. I made four on the run up to Christmas which have been worn a lot so this is useful sewing for me. I do love dresses but comfy and suitable for work is my current focus. x

  4. I am in awe of all of you who are able to make their own clothes so it is sales and charity shop finds for me.

  5. I love the fabric you used for this dress. I agree with you that a dress is so useful for work and saves time in the morning trying to match separates. A am impressed that you have made the pattern from a much loved dress. This has never worked very well for me. Do you have any tips you can share?

    1. Thank you. I pretty much cut around things just making sure to leave a big enough seam so I can try on then maybe pin it if it needs to come in a bit (you can always go smaller!). With cotton dresses I pin the darts when trying on and leave a gap in the seam for a zip. In this chiffon dress I pinned it to the mannequin for shape then stitched it in place when I was happy. Maybe I should do a step by step. I would definitely practice on inexpensive stretch fabric first if you are unsure. x


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