Gift of the Wind dress
Fabric: cotton/linen-like fabric from my mom’s stash, from a windfall of yardage and notions to recently come my way
Pattern: Simplicity 2444, free from Simplicity when they asked if I’d like to participate in a blog social. This is my extra credit :)
Year: fabric – early-mid 80s?; pattern – 2010, based off a 1964 pattern
Notions: thread, invisible zip, stay tape, lace hem tape, all stash
Time to complete: as usual, no clue
First worn: Mummy’s birthday dinner
Wear again: most def, gaping neckline and all
Total price: who pays for anything these days?
Golly, I’ve missed y’all! I’ve also missed a few deadlines & thus challenges. And now that I’m current on Mad Men, I don’t have to hide behind the fear of spoilers while scrolling through your collective awesomeness.
This dress truly is a windfall of a garment, and I didn’t even know the title of my inspiration public art piece until this morning. I stumbled upon Gift of the Wind one blustery November afternoon, just a couple days into unpacking boxes back here on the east coast. I loved it immediately, maybe because the wind really had the red kinetic sculpture moving against a bright blue sky, and everything was still fresh. Now I know it’s technically in Cambridge, but it stands in an area where you can walk a block and move from Cambridge to Somerville and back several times. Apparently my fondness for the sculpture isn’t widespread, as it’s been nominated as a contender for worst public art in New England. Hrmph. I’ll take it over the green monster any day.
When I was recently asked to sew up a dress for Simplicity’s blog hop, I immediately chose pattern 1913, thinking it would be the most flattering. But 2444 was my second pick, despite skepticism about wearing a full skirt. I’ve read a million times that full skirts work great for someone with my figure, but I just tend to feel frilly and frumpy in them, store bought or sewn. I thought I’d give it a go anyway, using this crazy bit of 80s awesome-sauce I found at my mom’s. It was already part of my spring/summer sewing plan, so why not? Once I caught drift of the city challenge, all was sealed. The sculpture is from 1983, and I’m guessing the fabric is, too.
I really love this print, and it looks like the poppies or whatever they are have been blown about by a gust of wind. Can you believe my mom has this in a yellow colorway, too? Nutter. I know it’s totally crazy. Some day I’ll start wearing things that are more staid. Or not. I’ve even come around to the full skirt a bit. It’s good for twirling, and has pockets for doggie treats! I lined the entire dress with white batiste, also from mom’s stash, using the bodice pieces and a trusty A-line skirt pattern. No need to include all those pleats on the lining. Of course, I ended up making my life more difficult by hand picking the zip THEN attaching the lining to the neck, THEN remembering that I’d have no means of stitching the armscyes & turning, because the sides were already stitched and serged. Pockets perfectly in place. Meh, nothing a little hand stitching can’t fix. So, the armscyes are hand stitched together. No way was I unpicking serger thread, when my typically finicky machine did a superb job. I think it likes tough love.
In my quest for the perfect fit, I made the same alterations I had just gone through on the bodice of 1913 to this pattern, and it worked a dream. (Slash/spread CB for round shoulders, add neck darts, pinch out 1/2″ horizontally to raise armhole.) Until I tried it on, lining in place, zip hand picked. The front of the bodice pulls a bit from shoulder to bust apex, creating some drag lines and a bit of gaping at the neck. I think it’s time someone pulled Little Lavi aside and had a talk. You know the one. FBA time. I’ve been out of the training bra almost since I went in one, but I’ve honestly never considered myself particularly well-endowed. Not itty bitty, no. Just average. But from all I’ve read, this looks like the issue. My chest isn’t concave, though there is some concavity happening due to forward shoulders, so the gaping isn’t due to that. But yeah. It’s high time I ‘fess up and go down a size, then figure out the FBA, no?