Saturday, April 30, 2016

April Showers bring Me Made May

Whew!  Nothing like Me Made May to make remember that I still have a blog. Last year was really busy (hence the radio silence) but there was lots of sewing going on.  In fact that included a fashion show where I sent six looks down the runway that I created.  But enough about the past, let’s talk about sewing!

Allie J has started hosting a social sewing series and to kick everything off the theme for April was April Showers.  This was perfect timing as in my sewing queue I had a dress was the most obvious interpretation of the theme. 
This is Sew House Seven’s Mississippi Ave dress made out of raindrop print double gauze. I bought the PDF of this pattern way back in August 2015 as part of the Sew Independent’s Sewing Indie Month Bundle.  It reminded a lot of a favorite Anthropologie dress with the partial elastic waist but smooth front but I was neck deep in fashion show sewing so I had to resist the temptation.  Fast forward to April 2016 and it seemed like the perfect spring dress.  I found the double gauze at my local Pacific Fabrics and while I knew I wanted to make a dress out of it I finally decided that this was a pattern and fabric match made in heaven.

Having never sewn a Sew House Seven pattern before I did a quickie muslin of the bodice and kinda pulled it close to simulate how it would look with elastic and gathered shoulders.  The fit seemed pretty good and my bra wasn’t peeking out so I decided to move forward and cut the double gauze.  Tracing the pattern was quick since there’s not that many pieces and everything seemed to line up pretty well. I appreciated that the cutting layout was set up with directional prints in mind and with a few minor tweaks I was able to have enough remaining fabric left over to make something else. To be fair I chose not to cut out the shoulder ties or neck and armhole bias strips because I was a little worried about bulk.  Cutting my fabric didn’t take much time at all so I was able to start sewing right away. I sewed this dress up over a couple evenings.  I used my serger to finish my seams although it did start acting up a couple times so a few edges look less than perfect.  The waist on the dress is intended to be slightly above the natural waist. My waist measurement is pretty small so next time I might lower it an inch so it does sit on my natural waist.

I found some lovely Cotton + Steel lawn on another trip to Pacific Fabrics that perfectly matches the occasional turquoise raindrop in the print.  I used this on my neck and armhole bias facings.  Next time I will cut it a bit narrower and use it more as a binding.  On some of the curves it seemed a little excessively wide but nothing that a bunch of steam from my iron couldn’t force into submission.  I had some left over bias strip and cut that in half lengthwise for the shoulder ties.  The bias will discourage fraying and allow me to skip tying knots at the ends.  This will make it a bit less bulky under a close fitting cardigan.

Here in Seattle we’ve had a weirdly dry and warm April but that wasn’t the case yesterday when I wore it for the first time.  But even with the cool weather and my low tolerance to cold I was plenty warm during the day without needing to add tights.  I can see wearing this dress a lot – even during early fall. I also have fabric set aside to make another that will be even easier to layer up and keep wearing all year.


I’ve been waiting until the very eve of Me Made May to figure out this year’s challenge.  I spent a lot of time trying to decide how to make it a bit different from the past but also fit into my everyday life.  In the end I accepted that my usual pledge would be more of a challenge this year so it wasn’t necessary to come up with anything new.  This has everything to do with my newish puppy.  Daily trips to the dog park don’t really play nice with pretty dresses that you wish to keep clean.  There’s always the chance of getting jumped up on and considering the park has lake access odds are high that those paws are muddy.  So really I just want to avoid wearing a me-made top and the same jeans every day, even if that means multiple wardrobe changes throughout the day.  So here we go…

'I, Erin of & @fisforflamingo (Instagram) sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May '16. I endeavor to wear at least one handmade item each day and hopefully fully me-made two days a week for the duration of May 2016.'

I’m really looking forward to checking out what everyone else is up to this month and picking up tons of inspiration!

1 comment:

  1. Great dress!! I didn't realize you had a blog. :)