|Merchant & Mills pattern|
My mother was an amazing dressmaker and tailor.........me on the other hand never even sewed on a button until I inherited her sewing machine and thought it would be nice to learn how to use it. I have had several attempts at learning dressmaking, once at a class, where the humiliation of having to be measured nearly saw me walking out the door. How much??!! That can't be right, the tape measure must be wrong....sob sob. Anyway, I made a blouse which never saw the light of day. A couple of years ago I made another attempt at a top which sort of fell apart. Ever the optimist I am now trying to make a dress, I am already thinking I don't actually like it and would never wear it and I haven't even finished. It looks like I accidentally stumbled into someone's tent, got caught up in it and stumbled out wearing the tent. It may look good on a 5'10" skinny person but not on a 5'1" 'well rounded' shorty. (and getting more rounded by the day with all the stress eating) I picked some cheap denim so I didn't waste too much money and now hate the fabric. However by learning from the mistakes on this dress the next dress with nicer fabric will be better. It said on the pattern that it was easy.....well I have already messed it up, completely missing marks that told me where sleeves etc should line up, well how was I too know that was what they were, they didn't actually say. It also said to iron interfacing around the neck. I didn't realise there were so many different types and just picked up the first I saw, yes you've guessed it, the neck was as stiff as a board. For an 'easy' pattern I feel the instructions could have been clearer for complete novices like me. I lost heart with it so the dress got shoved into a drawer and has remained there for months.
Then along comes Sewing Bee, for those not familiar with the programme, a group of amateur dressmakers compete each week to win the coveted Sewing Bee title. Each year I get all excited and yearn to be able to whip up a dress like them. Each year I fail miserably. I feel like the poor lad who was knocked out in the first round. But I live in hope, one day I will make something I can actually wear. I have retrieved the dress, unpicked the neck, luckily had enough material to cut out another and am now sweating and swearing over the sleeves. Well at least it takes my mind off the buying a house saga......which is still ongoing. I will never be able to achieve these amazing jeans made by Kristie but she kept trying and so will I. Obviously the sewing gene was not passed onto me but with practice, practice, practice hopefully I will improve.
Update: While the football was on, yes my lot are Man U. fans, I thought I would work on the dress and have finished it! With a few alterations, cutting a huge amount off the length and sleeves and adding a little line of stitching to the neck and sleeves I think it is passable. The seams inside are fraying like anything, I haven't got the hang on zigzagging close to the edge without the machine gobbling it up. But I would certainly wear it at home, and maybe out with a sleeveless cardi to pull it in so it doesn't look so much like a tent. I'm thinking of making a sleeveless one in a light cotton next, well I have to justify the cost of the pattern, I can mooch around the garden in it.
I'm hoping to finish off a few more projects before everything is packed away. I have earmarked a little box room in the new house for sewing but will be so busy sorting, painting and getting the garden cleared it may take a while to get sewing again. The saga of the move is continuing, we are now trying to find out the state of the septic tank, insure access to our bore hole which is in someone else's field and disconnect the electric supply to a GP building down the lane. Such are the complications when you are buying part of a farm that has been divided up. I'm still incredibly stressed but hopefully it will all be sorted soon.