I am aliiiiiiiive!!! I am so sorry it has literally been about 6 months since I last posted, that is crazy! This past school year was one of the busiest and most stressful ever as I had to complete a teacher intern program (passed thank you JC!!) and had after school commitments just about everyday. Not to mention due to some crazy winter weather we were stuck in school (us teachers that is) until June 12th. I was just too exhausted to even think about sewing! How sad is that? We have also managed to squeeze in quite a bit of traveling during this time to visit my family in New York, a trip west to visit my sister in law, and an incredible traditional Hindu wedding in Nashville. The good news is I am officially on summer break and I am rocking the machine!
To start out my summer sewing, I decided that I need to focus on items that are simple and wearable so that they will be really worth my while. I find that my most comfortable and easy to wear items are the ones I gravitate towards most, and I get the most compliments on. While it is fun to try out different patterns, I want to be more smart about what I m investing my time in. I am sure you busy folks can understand! Since I made Sewaholic’s Salt Spring dress last year, I have worn the thing a bajillion times and I just love it! Clearly I needed more of these in my life. Soooo I made two of them! I decided to stop at two, but don’t judge me if more show up.
The first Salt spring I made was with a bright Barbie pink linen blend. Yes it is PINK and I love it! I don’t have any pink in my closet and this linen material is so soft and wonderful that it had to happen. It is a bit heavy for a linen so I didn’t want the top to be too billowy or bulky so I took out a lot of the length in the bodice. This pattern has a longer bodice piece than the lining behind it in order to create that billow effect. I just made the bodice piece the same length as the lining. I also opted to made single thick straps instead of the ties because again, I thought it would add too much bulk to the material. I found that this dress definitely needs a belt to break up the monotony of the solid color.
The second Salt spring I made is closer to the original version of the pattern. I used this bright floral, flowy, soft, rayon challis. I LOVE this material, it was like wearing pj’s! On this one I wanted to keep some of the billowy effect in the bodice as it agreed with the material much more, however I have a short torso and I didn’t want to be swimming in the fabric. I ended up removing about two inches of length in the bodice and it still was pretty billowy and floppy, but it works! I also opted for the tie straps on this one since the material is so light and unstructured.
I wore this dress to a ladies dinner last night and it was a hit! I see this one getting broken out quite a bit this summer. I am loving this throw back 90’s floral trend that is huge right now, that is my decade after all!
Before I wrap up for the day, I wanted to share my second goal- buy NO MORE PATTERNS! My mother in law recently went to an estate sale and bought two gigantic boxes full of old and new patterns and I went through all of them and took the ones that I liked, which was essentially another box of patterns in my closet. These, plus the huge hoard of patterns I already own need to be loved! So my goal is to try out the patterns that have been waiting sadly forever, and additionally to start remaking items that I love and really work on mastering these. I appreciate a TNT pattern more than anyone, and this need to be a focus! For now I am off, but I will be back soon! Much less than 6 months- whew!
Ah yes, I have caught the latest bug going around… Colette Laurel! I love this pattern, it is a roomy shift dress with endless possibilities. I like that it isn’t too fitted, it gives it more of a casual feel and of course comfort. Around where I live people don’t get too gussied up unless it is for a special occasion, so some of the dresses I have made are sadly sitting in my closet waiting to be taken out for a night on the town. This dress I can easily wear to work or dinner or drinks without the feeling of being super overdressed amongst the jeans and tees.
The dress is an easy sew. It consists of just front and back panels, and sleeves if you desire. I cut a straight size 6 and still had quite a bit of ease to take in the back. I also lowered the neckline down an inch or two because it felt a little too restrictive and nun-like. Additionally, the sleeves were a little too long for my taste so I took those up a bit as well. I used bias tape around the neckline, and I was going to include it on the sleeve hem but I decided it was an overkill.
The fabric I used was a nice linen blend with a lime green, brown, and orangey-red ikat print. The linen is pretty dense, however it was still a little too sheer for my taste so I made the version with the underlining. I generally try to avoid lining with our hot summers, but it was necessary on this one.
I am loving how it turned out. I have been seeing some really cute versions of the Laurel made with beautiful eyelet fabric and I really want to try it out. I have never worked with eyelet material, but since this dress is so simple it will make the perfect guinea pig piece.
Until then I think I’ll have fun taking Laurel out on the town!