Friday, April 4, 2014

Picnic In Oregon Dress Flip

  This month's pattern flip at Frances Suzanne isn't a pattern that I would normally buy. Not only is it not my style, it's something I could easily draft myself. However, I came up with a really cute flip idea that I wanted to make, and of course it wouldn't be fair to link up without actually using the pattern. There's also a Spring break/Vacation challenge going on at Project Run and Play right now, and my flip fit that perfectly. Not only that, but I had all the fabric I needed to sew the flip!

  Let me start by saying that assembling the PDF was made needlessly difficult by the lack of page numbers or markings to match up. Once I had it made up, I cut out the 5T length, and the 4T width. I had a hard time choosing a size, since the only measurement charts are the measurements of the finished garment and my daughters don't have any dresses in a shape like this to compare.

  I cut a line straight down from the shoulder seam into the armscye to remove the built-in cap sleeve, shaving off about 1.5 inches total. I also cropped the lining to the same length as the middle colorblock section, front and back

  I drafted a collar by matching the shoulder seams of the front and back lining, copying the neckline, and drawing a rounded shape out from that with seam allowances.

   I tried a new method of drafting sleeves for this dress, and it looked like it worked pretty well, but since they are puff sleeves, and very forgiving, it's hard to tell if the method would work otherwise. I'll take some photos next time I use it. I do wish I'd made the sleeves a bit shorter.
  The final two flips were leaving off the lowest dress section entirely -using 10.5" length cut from the hem of this skirt instead, and adding ruffled lace in most of the seams. I'd originally planned to do scalloped piping, but it didn't work with my machine, and I had a lot of pretty lace waiting to be used, a gift from my Grandma. The ruffle is really full! It was gathered as tight as it could go at the top, and since the skirt I cut it from was a half-circle skirt, the hem is even fuller!

  Before sewing any part of the dress, I used a freezer-paper applique to create a hand-sewn ladybug on the front middle section. I satin-stitched some spots on it, chain-stitched legs and antennae, did a peking knot for the antennae ends, and a running stitch for a trail. I've only done reverse applique before now, and I thought this turned out really well, until I washed it to remove the markings I'd made. Then the ladybug body bubbled up in a bunch of spots. =(

  When it came to the sewing, I had to do things a bit differently to accommodate the sleeves (no hand-stitching there though! I'll do a tutorial if anyone is interested.) but the entire bodice is still beautifully finished:

  I did decide to hand-stitch the inside of the sleeve bands, but goodness, aren't they pretty?

  I left off the elastic in the back, since in my experience it takes less than a month for the elastic to break and be useless, and used three buttons instead of one. I made thread loops to close the back with, using a buttonhole stitch over two full strands of red embroidery floss rather than the chain I first learned. These ones feel nice and sturdy!

  I also used embroidery floss to sew the buttons on:

   The denim is upcycled from this maternity skirt, which no longer fits me. The lining is upcycled from part of a dust ruffle, the green gingham was originally a curtain, the red and black were originally sheets, and the lace was from my grandma. =) I even had thread to match!

  And now, how this all fits into a Picnic in Oregon. =)

  On the Oregon coast, where I was blessed enough to live for several years, there are spots with high bluffs overlooking the ocean (denim), with whitecaps dancing their way toward the shore (lace).

  Atop those cliffs, nestled among the grasses, are tiny wild strawberry plants, green with white flowers (buttons and gingham).

   And on those strawberry plants, you will often find a dainty ladybug looking for aphids, ready to fly away at a gentle breeze.

  This dress would be perfect for a picnic atop those bluffs, looking out over the beautiful, sparkling blue, with the wind gusting up from the edge of the cliff. =)

  I really love the way it turned out. =)

  I'm probably going to have to do another flip of this pattern, since I have some other fun ideas and will not be using it again otherwise.

  I also have a knit shirt for myself in the works (although I'm nervous about the fabric I'm using... I'm afraid it's going to be garishly bright).

  And I still haven't shown you the other shirt I made (which is too small, which is why I haven't taken any photos yet) or the winter dress I sewed for Booper a couple months ago!

  Besides that I made (glued, not sewed) a phone case for my husband, and am halfway-through another puzzle ball.
She thinks she is smiling. =)
  I need to post more!

  I'm linking up at:
Flip This Pattern
and:

Thanks for stopping by!

20 comments:

  1. I, for one, would LOVE to know how you finished the lining around the sleeves so nicely without handstitching! It seems most patterns direct the sewer to baste the outer and lining together at the armhole, then sew on the sleeve and serge/finish the raw edge. I love how your's looks and bet it's more comfortable, too.

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    1. Yay! I'll probably be making a dress with sleeves like this sometime in the next week, so I'll try to have the tutorial up soon after that. =)

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  2. Replies
    1. Thank you! It was really fun to learn how to applique. =)

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  3. That's really cute! I love the boots with it.

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    1. Thank you! Those boots go with everything... I love them!

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  4. Replies
    1. Thank you. =) I love learning new skills to make things pretty inside and out. =)

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  5. Wow that is super cute! You are so talented!

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  6. The dress is just charming! I love the old-fashioned vibe and the adorable ladybug. The sleeves are perfection and I am sure that there are lots of people who would love for you to do a tutorial. Your apron is wonderful! I love how you addressed the neck issue and how you fitted the bodice to your figure. It really is lovely. I read on to your blog about winning the $500 gift card. I am so very HAPPY for you! You made great choices on your purchases and will get years of use out of the machines. Blessings to all under your roof!

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    1. Thank you! I don't often sew things like this, but I love it when I get a chance! I'm still a little sad that the ladybug bubbled up though.
      I'll be sharing a tutorial on the sleeves soon, I just need to get the photos taken. =)
      Thank you! I love the apron too! I think I'll be making a couple more of those, because it would be nice to have a clean one when the first is being washed.
      I'm so thankful for that gift card! Those machines are things I would never be able to buy without it.
      Blessings to you and yours as well!

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  7. So glad to see you link up this month....and am looking forward to more 'flips' coming our way :)!

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    1. Thank you! I'm enjoying changing this pattern up. =)

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  8. So classic. And the details are amazing. I'd love to see you join us this week at the Inspire Us Thursdays! link party.

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    1. Thank you! I love details, but rarely take the time to add them. I'm glad I did for this dress! =)

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  9. Great color and puffed sleeves! The dress looks as good on the inside as it does on the outside!

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    1. Thank you! I just wish I had done a flat felled or French seam for the seam attaching the ruffle to the dress... it really doesn't fit with the rest of the dress! =)

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  10. Love the vintage feel! The gingham and lace is so pretty together and all of your small details like the hand stitching and hand sewn button loops are awesome!

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    1. Thank you! I love gingham and lace! =) It makes a garment worth so much more to me if I take the time to do it right. =)

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