I have been a long time fan of Etsy, but up until this point I have only bought jewellery and one rather fantastic silk screen print. It was an epiphany for me to find there are also a wide range of sewing patterns available.
There are lots of sellers with original vintage patterns, to get truly vintages looks, but also many sewers who have taken to time to draft and design their own patterns.
Guilty of being heavy handed at times, the idea of printing a sewing pattern onto sturdy white A4 appeals to me greatly.
Readers please spare a thought for all the sewing patterns I have torn, crumpled, punctured and ripped.
God bless you stupid flimsy sewing patterns.
I chose the Amelya from this great store
I love downloadable patterns as it means you can print and print again and cut in whatever size you need and not have to be precious about cutting one size or faffing about with transferring the pattern to save the other size options.
Also this is way easier to file on my computer than trying to fold the pattern back into its envelope.
There’s only one little girl I know coming up to 6 months to fit the smallest version of this dress and that’s my niece Clodagh.
Clodagh loves the telly so that was a great excuse to be able to use this amazing Robert Kaufman fabric, with retro style TV’s all over.
This dress used a few techniques that were new to me- easing in a sleeve and applying a placket.
When it came to adding the sleeves, I just tried to pin the pieces as they would sit when the dress was 3D, so to speak.
I know this might sound obvious but trying to pin the pieces flat will only result in gathers. Always think of a pattern and how the pieces will come together to make the finished article. My sleeves are pretty good for a first attempt I think, but I know these are definitely on the easy side when it comes to sleeve setting.
Now, let’s talk placket. I have only just now got to a head space where I can talk about a placket, because nearly all my being hates the placket. I got the placket wrong many many many times in making this dress and it nearly killed me. My tomb would have read “here lies a woman who just couldn’t grasp the concept of a placket now she is dead. GODAMMIT”.
For those of you who don’t know, a placket is a general term for an extra flap of material used in fastenings. In this case it is an extra section to cover the opening at the top of the skirt section, below the fastenings on the bodice section. I can see that a placket is a lovely addition and helps maintain modesty, but part of me thinks “if I need to undo the zip to see the placket I am already undoing the zip and already know what travesties are lurking beneath”.
To add the placket I left a 2inch gap at the top of the skirt, here I hemmed and then inserted a triangular section.
I love the tie detail on this dress, it is pretty and also helps to cover the gathering stitch I used on the skirt.
I used poppers again, because I am still not near a machine that has a button hole setting. I promise once again that I’ll soon be a master button holer.
For my favourite telly addict, Clodagh