The “Almost Designer” Dress | Debi Fry
Fabric: 1.5 metres each of red and brown crepe back satin (matte crepe side on outside, shiny satin side on inside) £10
Pattern: Simplicity 3948
Year: c. 1941
Notions: 1 zipper so far, perhaps another zipper or the blasted buttons and buttonloops £3
Time to complete: 7 hours so far
Wear again? I am really liking how it looks so far…to be determined!
Total Cost: ~£13
If I were on project runway today, my model would be walking down the catwalk without sleeves and without any properly sewed closures…oh and no hem. sigh. I'd probably get booted off. Hopefully the general public would save me!
Ah, I had such high hopes for this week's challenge. I chose as my inspiration the 'little moose' dress by Elizabeth Hawes.
Elizabeth Hawes was an amazing American Designer who did a lot of work during the 30's and 40's. I was inspired by some of her fashions after seeing the post over at the Colette blog on her designs. Definitely check it out as she made some amazing dresses!
Hawes felt that the body and its clothes must work together. She thought that American women should not accept French fashion as the standard. Her goal was to bring stylish clothing with an American sensibility to the masses and believed that all women deserved to have beautiful and functional clothes. (from the Colette blog post)
here, here! Plus she wrote a book called "Fashion is Spinach"…I like this lady!
I used a Simplicity pattern from 1941:
The faux bolero piece is attached by a lapped seam to the main dress bodice. I knew trying to do a lapped seam on crepe back satin would be a nightmare. So I hand basted the entire bodice 'faux bolero' piece to the main dress:
So what happened this week??? Well, all was going on smoothly. My sister was in town but I thought I could manage. I got up early and sewed and then was hoping to finish it up last night. Then….I encountered the blasted button loops. See on version 2, the cute little buttons going up the front of the dress? Easy peasy right? Good lord, how I hate making button loop tubing. It has to be really small because the buttons have to be small. I don't know how people sew a really tiny piece of fabric and then turn it inside out. I even have a 'loop turner' which is an entirely useless contraption. I spent 3 hours on the blasted button loops. grrrrrr…. I am contemplating whether I just go with a front hidden zipper as in View 1.
I don't think this would have been a problem normally as I would have just kept going…perservering. But this week is a conglamerate of lots of things happening. My sister was in town and we toured around Scotland. To be fair, I could have skipped out early one evening to do some sewing but I hardly ever see my family now that we live in Scotland! And as you read this I am in Portugal for a conference…which I, ahem, have not really prepped sufficiently for! Oh and we are moving next Wednesday! giggle. Start the circus music!! (I'm actually going to sit out next week's challenge as we are moving right in the middle of the week).
Oh and here are some fun photos of my sister and I. For some reason we think some signs are hilariously funny. This is on the Isle of Skye:
But here's a nice picture also on the Isle of Skye…such a beautiful place!
What about you? Any visiting family this summer?