Saturday, January 30, 2010

Sewing Summer Dresses

Every year I make a few dresses for myself - these are the ones I made last year.  The pink one is stretch twill, the one with black pockets a very slippery polyester (but it was a nice weight and I think I paid $1 meter for it) and the 2 on the right were lightweight knits - sort-ov with the feel of a swimsuit, but a bit heavier.  The brown one I made to pop on over my bathing suit for beach trips.  And the long-sleeved one was for colder Spring weather.  I got lots of use out of all these dresses and will still wear them in warmer weather.
For this year - I think I will make another version of the pink one - in a stretch denim.  I also want to make 1 or 2 more of the funny one with black pockets.  I will omit the pockets, plus add an inch to the length.  There is also a sleeve option on the pattern so 1 dress I will do short-sleeves.  It is a nice, simple dress and I wore it all the time last summer.  So, I need 2 more!  Even though I didn't like the directions, had to change the keyhole opening to make it lay flat and added lots more top stitching - I think I said while making it that I would never make it again - but I just love wearing it, so there you go.  Maybe 1 in a print and a second in a solid color.  But they will have to wait until I get back to Canada where my patterns are! 
Both of those dresses have an A-frame shape and zippers up the back.  Don't be afraid of zippers - they aren't so bad once you get used to them.  One trick my sister taught me was to baste the zipper opening closed with a large stitch and press it open.  Zip the zipper shut and place it right on that seam and sew it into place.  Undo the basting.  Perfect!  I don't understand why the pattern directions usually do it differently - it is soooo much more complicated the way the direction say and it never seems to line up perfectly either.  So, try my sister's way - she is a great sewer!
In the meantime, I have found a pattern magazine over here that has THREE dresses in there that have caught my eye!  Now - if I can just find a fabric store where fabric is not 20 Euros and up PER metre and get some tracing paper - I will be ready to start on my summer dresses.  Most my dresses usually cost $7 - $10  to make when I use a coupon for the zipper and thread and pick out a sale fabric.  I almost always buy the patterns for $1 when Joanne's is having a pattern sale.  So, 20 Euros a meter just for the fabric alone won't do!  I think I would be too scared to even cut into the fabric if I paid that much for it!  I sew to have fun and to relax, not be scared!
Day 3 of antibiotics and I am starting to feel a little better, but not good enough to really get up for long yet.  I haven't been this sick since my son was 3 - but he has been a good sport and brings board games and cards into the bedroom to play with me.  And - at least I can lay in bed and dream about summer dresses while I get my rest!  I guess that is a good activity on cold, winter days!
Are YOU thinking of making any summer clothes for this year?  Now is a good time to get a head-start!


Katjaquilt said...

I'm living in Germany and piecing my some of my and my kids wardrope. I never came across fabric that was $1/meter like it seems to be at JoAnns (neither did I see cottons with costs 20 Euro/meter). But we have big department stores like Karstadt or Kaufhof which offer fabric. And they often have a bargain table with the reduced fabrics. My local fabric store often offers the last meters of the bold cheaper. On you buy online. There are often bargains.

Kath said...

You make a delighful model! I particularly like the long sleeved dress, it reminds me of a dress I had in the 70's which I loved. All fashion seems to come back around don't you think.
I do enjoy your Blog, I am a scrap addict too!Best wishes from England