I have only one photo on my camera that I’m in: isn’t the bridal party beautiful?
And I wasn’t the only one wearing homemade clothes – the bride’s mother made the dresses!
It was a perfect day.
But living in a castle, being waited on every minute of the day and night and eating and drinking for 12 hours solid has to come to an end some time so all the glad rags are washed and packed away silently waiting for another grand occasion.
There aren’t too many gaps in my wardrobe – that’s the benefit of making your own clothes – but there are two styles of dresses that were missing – a shirt waister and a maxi. I’ve been avidly reading about shirt waister dresses and researching patterns and various styles and settled on Vogue 8829. I believe this now OOP but it must be quite recently as I think I only bought the pattern in the one before last Vogue pattern sale. There is a multitude of options on this dress – long, short, A-line, straight skirt, sleeveless or any length of sleeve you want. It’s great.
I’ve avoided the maxi dress until now because – I don’t know why – just have. Anyway, I combined the two into one…….
The fabric is an bold African cotton seersucker by Julius Holland and a meagre £16 gets you an amazing 5 yards (albeit only 45″ wide); a black and white geometric embossed wax print from Middlesex Textiles. I also purchased a few other black and white designs while I was there. The cotton is not a soft drapey fabric but remains a little stiff even after washing, however this means it keeps its shape. Just be aware that most of the prints are large motifs which is not always clear from the website photos. As you can see, I went for the maxi view C – this is achieved by sewing a band around the bottom of the skirt so easily removed if I change my mind about the length.
The fabric necessitated a bit of headache inducing pattern matching – want to see some good chevrons?
The dress has a centre back pleat for ease of movement and I just made a self-fabric tie belt. The pattern calls for only 8 buttons on this maxi length but I put on 14! I felt I needed the extra security and thought the last button was just too high – creating a crotch view split!
All in all – I’m happy with the length and the dress itself for summer wear. This is a kind of muslin as I have some delicious wool and linen mix for autumn workwear and it’s going to be this dress. I’ll make the collar a little smaller, make the straight skirt (turning waist pleats into darts), add some in-seam pockets and stick in some sleeves.
Are your thoughts turning to autumn/winter wear already too? Or spring/summer if you’re in the southern hemisphere? Regardless, happy and successful sewing to you all!