Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Sewing Saturday

What is the most rational use of a weekend when you have custom orders stacking up and about a zillion other things to do? Try to make three dresses and two nightgowns in one day, of course.

Carly was a great little helper!

I really hate having more than one project going at a time. Usually this is a good thing because it means I don't really need to hoard fabric and yarn. Mostly. Maybe a little. But when there are so many projects that are all the same priority (STATUS RIGHT NOW) it gets frustrating. So I guess I'm a project hoarder.

Carly really needs dresses for cool weather. It's so hard to find anything at the stores that aren't made of tulle and covered in sequins, glitter, or saucy phrases emblazoned across the butt. And really, does a four-year-old need sexy ruching on her hips and neckline? Still, anything remotely practical is going to be short-sleeved, like holiday party dresses. Why do all little girls winter dresses have short sleeves?? This has never made sense to me. So we're usually stuck with corduroy jumpers over turtlenecks, which is ok I guess, but we're having a hard time finding even those this year.
I happened to have a  pattern from a garage sale that would do, so I got a few yards of corduroy and spent the first three hours of Saturday morning cutting all my pieces. The pattern was simple, the style was perfect, and the selection of corduroy at Joann's was [miraculously] satisfactory. 

Unfortunately, the smallest size of my pattern was a six, which would be alright on my amazon child in retail clothes, but in the sewing pattern world basically means a plus size. Still, I thought if I made extra-deep seam allowances I would be ok. 
Erm no.

Look at her go. She's such a little model.

Of course Carly loves it because it drags the ground. Oh well, I guess we'll have a dress ready to go when she hits age 12, right?
There's another one of these patterns on etsy, so I'll probably grab that if my Joanns doesn't have any. It's out of print, so probably not. :/

At least the nightgowns turned out ok, even if they are a little big. Hopefully they'll last a few years!

I let her pick out the fabric. The other nightgown has princess castles all over it.
These were really fun and easy to make, I'd like to do some more!
 Ohhh wait we need matching nightgowns! Eeek!

Now here comes the sad part of the day. I swear I worked as quickly as I could, stopping only for a few minutes to grab a bite to eat, but I still had time for only one more dress.

Yeah, that brownie is almost TWO INCHES tall.

Anyway this last dress really has me boiling. It looks sooo simple, but I'm stuck.

Simplicity. I hate you. Even your brand name mocks me.
 So here's the deal. There's this yoke piece. (You can see it best on the drawn example in the middle.) And it somehow goes on the front of the dress after you make the pleats. I say somehow because it's truly a mystery as to how it's supposed to get there.
Here's what I mean:

Now here it clearly states that any helpful drawings will be shaded for right sides and blank for wrong sides, does it not?
It does. Ok good I'm not going crazy.

Now here are the written instructions: (The dress fetus met its demise at step number four.)

So basically from what we read here, we're going to sew the yoke against the front so that the wrong side of the yoke will be showing when we look at the front of the dress, are we not? Because it says right there in capital letters, "RIGHT sides together."

But here's the illustration:


Both of those pieces are blank, as in NOT patterned, as in RIGHT sides. How can that be? I swear I sat there and stared at this for like an hour. Then I checked all my pattern pieces and all my markings and even the entire rest of the pattern instructions. I just don't get it. 

OH my gosh. You guys I am SO stupid!
As soon as I hit the publish button on this post and re-read what I wrote, the answer hit me!
I'm supposed to pinch up the seams on the front to meet the edges of the yoke
I feel SO DUMB right now!
Although in my defense, it was really hard to see in the tiny illustration and then as I examined my photo I could see what I missed. But still, I'm a moron. And probably shouldn't be trusted with needles and scissors.


Mika said...

Big 3 patterns (Simplicity, etc.) are NOTORIOUSLY huge, so I wouldn't waste my money buying another of the same pattern. My FAVORITE dress pattern for making really nice dresses for holidays, etc. is the Precious Dress pattern by Carla C. There are tons and tons of options, but its really well written and while in depth, it's not a HARD sew. You can find it on youcanmakethis.com. Good luck!

SewSweetStitches said...

AWWW I LOVE that dress! Peter pan collar and everything. I am SUCH a sucker for those. Buying now, thanks!!

becca.elpy said...

For the record, sewing instructions more often than not tie my brain in knots. Either the pics don't match the written part or the written part was run through some poor translation device. Or you get construction that defies logic. So I end putting it together in the way that makes the most sense and ask my mom when I get stuck. hehe.

Glad you were able to get it sorted.

andrea creates said...

don't feel bad. i can stare at clothing pattern instructions for hours before i 'get' it sometimes. and even then i sometimes just do what i think is right-it all looks cute though-
the little model too :)

Catherine said...

I'm sure we've all misread a pattern at some stage, I know I have and then once I start sewing it eventually clicks into place. Mind you I'm sure these patterns companies can get it wrong sometimes.

jenni said...

i want a prancing pony nightgown!!!!