I want to talk about sewing projects. I'm not the fanciest seamstress. I don't have a tremendous amount of time to devote to sewing. I'm not brand new either. I learned to sew when I was a girl. I don't have a clever idea, like sewing through Vogue's sewing book or anything like that. I have no aspirations to start an indie pattern company.
But I still want to talk about sewing.
I sew on a fairly regular basis, but I haven't sewn clothing for myself in over a decade... until last week. I made a muslin of a dress for myself.
My friend was posting a bunch of photos from Mod Dolly and I loved the dresses. They remind me of dolly dresses, which I love to make.
And they have a vintage flair, which I always find appealing. And they look so comfortable, sweet, and fun to sew. I started to look for vintage patterns on ebay and etsy and found one that had the basic shape I wanted, in about my size & I found some pretty cotton quilters fabric on sale for $2.49 a yard to make a muslin.
I curved the square neckline and added a Peter Pan collar. I also change the sleeve from a bell shape (which is not so evident in this sketch, but clear when you look at the arm band, which was about 18" - I brought it into 14" to make it more of a little pouf.) I made the shorter length, thinking it would hit around the knee, but on 5'1" me, it looked closer to the long version, so I cut about 8" off the bottom. In retrospect, this makes the dress a little too short for work, but it's still quite cute and wearable for bopping around on the weekends.
I ordered one size larger in the bust than my actual measurements - for one, it was the only size that I found this pattern in and for another thing, vintage patterns often had less ease, so wanted to err on the side of extra size, rather than scaling up.
I think I will make a second muslin and take the yoke in a bit, but leave the skirt the same size so that there is a bit more gathering & it's a bit more tailored around the arms and upper bust. I may also make a straight 3/4 sleeve so that I could have a wearable muslin that was work-worthy.
This project was so enjoyable that I started looking at other vintage patterns and discovered a world of indie pattern makers and sewing blogs in the process, which I have really been enjoying. I ordered the Chelsea Dress and the Chic and Simple pattern book from Christine Haynes, a few more vintage patterns from ebay, and a pretty dress pattern from Vogue - V8876.