Thursday, 2 February 2012

Sewing against the seasons

Although it may seem a bit odd to be posing in the snow in a sundress (and furry boots), there is a method to my madness.  We've been sewing with a "Down Under" theme this week, because last summer "The Perfect Sundress" theme forced the Southern hemisphere members to take photos looking ridiculous in their tiny shorties and sundresses in the middle of their winter.  Payback time.  Although I must point out that a Canadian winter is orders of magnitude more wintery than an Australian one. 

 The Facts
Fabric: thrifted cotton border print = $2
Pattern: Butterick 5355
Year: c1980
Notions: black invisible zipper
Time to complete: 3 hours
First worn: Lying in the snow
Wear again? Yes, in the summer and down south
Total price: $4

It’s been alternating between freezing rain and  0C for the past week, so finding a good moment to snap some quick photos was hard to come by!  Finally there was a break in the weather this afternoon, and so after we managed to wrangle the kids into the car to go skating, we grabbed the chance to take some bathing beauty shots on the front lawn.  Well, not exactly front lawn, but front snow pile.

I’m a child of the ’70s, so the vintage portion of my pattern collection is made up of largely of 1967-1980 pattterns.  The sundresses and wrap skirts of my childhood are lodged in my memory as classics, even if some people cringe at the memory or think them dowdy.

I found this fabric at my local thrift shop bundled with a blue colourway of the same print; I waffled a bit about which colourway to use, but then I realized that I already own a few blue dresses but no red ones.  This cotton was super easy to cut, press and sew, and it is opaque enough that a lining wasn’t needed.  It is a bit stiff, so from the side view the pleats release over the stomach and give a slight… shall I say….3 months along kind of look?  In fact, when I was trying it on for fit the other night, my man said, “Is it supposed to puff out like that?”.  Not a good sign.

I didn’t have a red invisible zipper, but if Oona has taught me anything, it’s that shit don’t have to match to look awesome.  BTW, having an invisible zipper foot has rocked my world.  I highly recommend it.  Soooo much better than fiddling about with a regular foot and sewing over the teeth or leaving awkward gaps.

Actually, I’m going to Botswana and South Africa in a few weeks for work, and I need some new HOT HOT HOT weather clothes.  This should fit the bill perfectly because it’s loose and cool, won’t show too much travel dust and it covers the knees.  I wore shorts last time I was in Botswana without knowing that showing your thighs is a bit of a no-no;  everyone was so polite that they didn’t say anything, but after a while I noticed that people were constantly giving me sideways glances.  Kind of like the looks I got from all the passers-by while we were taking these photos this afternoon.

Outtake:  dropping my full length wool coat aside for the shortest time possible.


  1. Thanks, I liked the way it turned out too. But I like not having to freeze my junk for a photo shoot even better!


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