dresses, sizing, vintage, dress, Simplicity 7073, sewing patterns, liz lemon, 30 rock, fashion, dressmaking, print, womenswear, apparel, happiness, Seventies, tv, tv series, hope, prints, giveaway, maudella 5776, new look
Fabric: Printed knit made of 70% static and 30% thread. Grey with black sleeves.
Presses with docility and doesn’t crumple. The static wasn’t too bad when I wore the dress today but when I took it off you could have landed a plane using the sparks alone. I bought it from Abakhan on Friday when I popped in after work to cheer myself up. It worked, but I was in serious danger of binging like a pelican on the beach.
I bought a big piece and I should have enough for a top if I work with a little more leftovers from another knit.
Pattern: Maudella 5776. Maudella (b. 1937) is the Grandma of New Look. You can read more about it here. I cut the size 12 bodice (talk about a boatload of ease), opened up the neckline a little and folded the tiny darts on top of the back piece on the tissue paper.
The skirt I drafted myself, directly on the fabric, as a rectangle cut into two trapeze shapes. Speaking of patterns, you can still enter the giveaway here.
Year: I could not for the life of me find a copyright anywhere on this, but I reckon late Sixties, maybe early Seventies.
Notions: Thread and recycled bias tape for shoulder and waist seam, Magic Hem (Wunda Web? Supa Trousers? Turnups No More? You get the gist) for the hem. All from stash.
And the insides? Nope. I started this at lunchtime on Sunday to wear to work on Monday. Insides, schminsides.
Hours: An afternoon with a break for the last episode of Africa, and a bit of the evening.
First worn: Today for work, and I am quite pleased at how it withstood at 10-hour day at the office.
Wear again? Oh yes. This can go next to my brown and turquoise dress that I have worn to death for the past three years.
Make again? Absolutely. I do not have any more knit fabric but I’d quite like to see this in a woven. It’s a lovely fit for something so simple.
Total cost: A fiver for the fabric. Yes, I have destroyed the budget for February, but I am a happy woman.
When life gives you lemons, go to the fabric shop.
Last week was a little bit odd. Work was quiet, while we waited for something we must have before the January Marathon starts. Lemons were handed, but not in the office.
I trimmed and framed some quilting blocks and spent some time making a stripy top in one of those flimsy knits that I hate so much. The top didn’t work, but the stripes on the darts and centre back seam are so perfectly matched that I might have to salvage it just to show them off.
I also found out that I will be roommate-less in a few weeks’ time, which is always a bummer. I am tired of the usual rigmarole of ten people emailing and five showing up, of which four are creeps and one is decent but ends up moving somewhere else. I’ll be ok, but I could do without the aggravation. Sadly, I can’t do without the readies.
After learning the news on Thursday I decided to go fabric shopping to cheer myself up, and picked up some grey synthetic knit with the black leaves to make another Simplicity 7073. Fast, easy and flattering. What could possibly go wrong?
When life gives you lemons, turn to an old friend.
On Saturday morning I tried on my first ever S7073 (still nicely full of ease despite three months of non-running and much eating) and decided to re-trace the pattern, both to allow for the stretch of the knit fabric and to shorten the skirt using the shortening lines rather than gingerly chopping six inches from the traced pattern and the actual dress.
So I sat down to re-trace a much smaller and shorter version, and after about two hours I was lucky enough to have to leave the house, lest I tried to stab myself with a Sharpie in frustration.
The process resumed in earnest on Sunday morning, but it just wouldn’t work. The thing is way too big on the tissue paper. Massive. And because it’s a single-size pattern, there are less reference points when altering it. I’ll come back to it, but after my week I needed some low-hanging fruit(**) that wasn’t citrus-tastic.
I traced the Bust 34 bodice, cut, sewed ignoring the instructions, made a skirt ignoring the pattern, wore it to work today and loved every minute of it. Fruit doesn’t hang much lower than this.
When life gives you lemons, place them into abyss.
Simplicity 7073 and I have grown apart. It was a painful realisation, but I found great comfort in the book I’m reading, Love me by Garrison Keillor, which is the story of how a couple grows apart. It’s very good.
When life gives you lemons, speak Rhino to the lemons.
On a break from making this dress I rang my viewing companion to sync the respective media players for the latest episode of Africa. They mentioned how, according to the blurb, Sir David was going to meet a baby rhino. In jest, we agreed that there was no doubt Sir David can speak Rhino, because he’s utterly awesome.
And a few minutes later, that’s exactly what happened. Sir David spoke rhino to a baby rhino. The clip is here on the BBC website and there’s no end to how amazing it is.
In other words: when life gives you lemons, keep smiling. And squeeze them away from your eyes.
(*) Spent a lot of the past week talking about 30 Rock. Wouldn’t have it any other way.
(**) My boss loves the expression and I find it very Donaghy-esque.