Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sewing Expeditions

That may seem a silly phrase, but it’s exactly how I feel when I embark on a new pattern or new style. After being inspired by The Polish Wife’s photo of a recently completed farbenmix pattern “Geske”, I decided to tackle some patterns that I had in my stash that I had never done before.

All pattern sewing for me is a learning experience, which is why it’s such fun to try new things. Better yet, I had some fabric that I had been meaning to use up. A one yard cut of one of my favorite prints in turquoise, hot pink, and coral was just waiting for my brain to have enough time to decide what I wanted to do with it. So after I finished up an order, I focused in on the pattern “Henrika.” It is a dress pattern that buttons down the back, and I wanted only short sleeves as it would be a summer dress.

All went well until I realized that I had been thinking about the ruffles completely wrong. So, even though I had stitched and top-stitched the thing to where it was nearly finished, I ended up having to rip out two skirt panels on both sides in order to insert the ruffles themselves into the side seam. It would never work to have them not enclosed in the seam and just kind of hanging there in space.

After that little mishap, it was smooth sailing, and you can see the results! Honestly though, I will not be making this particular style again in a woven cotton. Certain patterns just work better with knits, and this happens to be one of them. As it happens, I purchased some great striped knits from the Oilily Outlet outside of Amsterdam, and I think this will be a delightful use of the fabric. My daughter's favorite color is blue, but I'll be doing this in a white and red stripe, and with a woven cotton ruffle, and might even applique something on the front if I can find an idea I want to do.

What is my next “expedition”? I have a cute halter style dress in mind, a modified Xenia if you will, but I have to change the back from a zipper to a button back, because I have not mastered the zipper. Being the perfection freak that I am, if the zipper doesn't look professional, I want no part of it. Stay tuned...

P.S. Our dog is now insistent that he be photographed right along with my child. A star is born...