Thursday, 16 September 2010

New term, new dress

Apologies for lack of posting recently. It has been crazily busy here with the new start of term. Also we have been picking a lot of green tomatoes, apples and damsons, and I made chutney.

I am finding it hard to form coherent thoughts due to the fact I am sleeping very badly (Any remedies for being wide awake in the small hours thinking too much and unable to sleep?)

Little I has just begun her nursery school this week, though last week two days were taken up with her teachers visiting us at home and then us going in for a family visit. Now she has settled really well and is going every afternoon for three hours. (The house is eerily quiet without her). We are just in an awkward phase of her loving nursery but being so exhausted when she comes home that bedtime routines and mealtimes are slightly askew. We are very fortunate that our local authority run preschool/ nursery for 3 - 5 year olds is run on Reggio principles. I could write an essy on this but will try to restrain myself here. Suffice to say it is an amazing child-centred, creative space full of things to do and lovely staff. I am planning a future post about this, as I am so passionate about it.

But for now, back to the sewing, a couple of weeks ago, I finished this dress, based on this pattern variation of the dirndl dress from the Built By Wendy dresses book. I used charity shop fabric found back in May. I think it is cotton sateen - can you see the sheen on it? I put the pockets int he seams instead of patch pockets and made the v neck higher than the pattern as I don't like to show much cleavage! I also cheated and avoided a zip at the back by sewing as far as I could and still be able to get the dress on and then used a snap fastener. I made binding from the same fabric for the neck and armholes. And I did sew slowly... I french seamed the side seams and did not skip on my pressing as I went along ( a sewing crime I have often been guilty of in the past).

When I first got the Dresses book I have to say I was going to skip the dirndl altogther but this fabric just seemed to me to need to be in a dress with a waist. Do you know what I mean? Does fabric sometimes suggest a certain style or pattern to you? I am also not sure about the dresses that I initailly like the best or like the best on other people... there is a slow dawning that the shapes I may like the look of instinctively may not always work best on my body shape. I now need to work this dress into my SS September - as I am not going to any tea parties or events I may just have to put it on for the school run, the nursery drop off, feeding the chickens....

I am also keeping an eye out in the charity shops for some belts to go with this dress, plus some suitably girly but wearable shoes. Making a dress in a different shape to what I usually wear has made me realise that this means a re-thinking of shoes. It is getting to too cold to get away with sandals now. But I am determined not to buy any new shoes.

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