The “Bye Bye Summertime” Dress | Veronica Darling
Fabric: Tablecloth, thrifted $3, Lining Grey Lawn $.20
Patterns: Colette Patterns Rooibos
Year: c. 2009
Notions: Vintage zipper $1
Time to complete: 7 hours
First worn: February 2011
Wear again? Yes! Maybe my brother's beach wedding in May?
Total Cost: ~$4.50
Colette Patterns FTW. I've never made one before, but seen the buzz online about Colette Patterns and now can see why. As you know most of my sewing stuff is second hand, so I don't really buy any new commercial products but I would seriously consider getting out of that habit just for the rest of Colette Pattern's collection.
I don't really know where to begin with this one! It's AMAZING in every way, and Husbie and I think it could be the best thing I've EVER made! Seriously! First up, I had a long look online of other Rooibos creations, to see if there was any secret in fabric, and I noticed a lot of people tried the block colours, or smaller prints like tiny spots or patterns. I hadn't seen any larger prints, and even though a lot of factors were pointing against this working (I'll explain them below) the dress is a piece of wonder and overcame all obstacles!
The fabric is a secondhand tablecloth, with – after I become sold on using it for Rooibos, I noticed – many table/coffee stains. It took about 2 hours of laying out the pattern pieces to make sure I was using the best of that floral print and avoiding the stains. It was particularly hard mapping out the pieces so not all the red flowers were down one side, that there was a mix all through the garment. In a complete fluke, the last piece I cut out was the waist band, with the white horizontal line… and I had no idea how awesome it looked until I sewed it all together.
Colette Patterns have the darlingest little sewing booklet with really great instructions and advice all throughout. I initially wanted to do piping (like it suggests in the booklet), but thought it'd be all way too much 'going on' with the floral print, so instead just used a grey (like the flowers) lawn for facing/lining the pockets. As an afterthought the 'collar' pieces, you can see in the pattern, didn't really suit so I've tucked them under the neckline for these photos and will stitch them to the facing/lining.
How great are pockets in dresses?!
The other factors that could have made this an ultra fail:
- invisible zipper with thicker material, but it went in fine! I used a few online tutorials to double check I was doing it right!
- a high neckline & an A line shaped skirt doesn't really suit my body shape, but it has turned out ok. I chose Rooibos because the model looked like Regina Spektor, and not really on the style of dress. Oops!
- Forgetting to resize the shoulders (my usual problem with patterns) actually turned out fine too! I did resize the waist (on the skirt pieces) & shorten the hem before I cut the fabric and am glad I did because I was slithers away from running out of material.
Oh and you have to see the way the facing/lining was attached to the bodice! It was the most interesting way I've ever sewn it! First the neckline on the inside, then you ROLL the shoulders to the other shoulder/armhole and flip it over sew it up, and pull it through. Then do the other side. What's this technique called (if you can understand my bad description!) as it was FABULOUS!
The Colette Pattern Theme this week is also about colour palettes, and considering it's just hit autumn in Australia, I've called this my Bye Bye Summertime Dress and my colour palette is autumnal:
I used the colours in the dress to match my accessories as well as the photos are taken near a much loved (and hated!) sculpture in Melbourne currently living near an art centre and a theatre. When we were taking the photos it started to rain, and in typical Melbourne autumnal spirit the sun then shined and the air got all electric! I like that some of my colours are warm *and* sharp as it does reflect our changing seasons.
And yes, you've caught me on another Pin Curl Set Day! Makes for a very vintage look though!
Best, Veronica Darling
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