To cut a (not so) long story short(er), this week’s Sew Weekly Challenge was to make something in green, since it’s about the time of St Patricks Day.
Therefore, I made a green dress. A very green dress. If there was one thing that could be said about this dress, it’s that it is green. There is no doubt about it. Green, green, green.
Apparently this dress brings to mind images of leprechauns, Christmas, Irish Dancing and Santa’s Helper, according to my mother and Steve. They’ve also informed me it’s very very green. (Not that I had any doubt whatsoever about the colour.)
Too bad – I quite like it, so I’m going to wear it anyway. So nah nah nah to all of that.
So saying though, it does look better with a black belt, just to break up with colour a bit. And will probably be better again with black knee-high boots and a black cardigan over the top. Which is all rather convenient really, since it’s made from a very heavy-weight cotton drill, so it’s definitely a winter-weight dress.
And without further ado (or comments on it’s greenness), here it is, the Green Dress…..
Fabric: 4 metres of heavy-weight cotton drill (trouser weight, really). Not sure of cost as it’s been in my stash for a while, but at a guess ~$35
Pattern: Style 1541 ~$6 from TradeMe
Notions: Invisible zip ~$6, hook and eye, vintage bias binding (free from a friend)
Time to complete Around 4 hours
Will I wear it? Yes! Even if it does make me look like a walking Christmas character and makes my boyfriend laugh. So there.
Would I make the pattern again? Yes. Although next time I’d drop the waist by 1.5cm as it’s a little bit too high for me at the moment
Total cost: Around $47 although the fabric has been in my stash for probably around 10 years so not sure if you can still count it as a cost by that stage!
So it turns out that I have a lot of green fabric in my stash. These are a few of the varieties I have (not including any knit fabric, or at least half of my stash which is currently in storage):
As you can see, I had a few options for this challenge! Since the challenge was to make something green, I went for the greenest fabric I had. Why not, after all! Hence this bright kelly green cotton. (And after all, I am quite fond of bright colours.) With the challenge being about colour this week, it was also a good opportunity to make the first item in my Sewing Through The Decades plan – Style 1541 from 1976.
I must admit, I did regret the fabric choice a bit while I was making this dress. It’s a very heavy-weight cotton drill, essentially a trouser weight fabric, and at various points in the process it felt a bit like I was attempting to wrestle it into submission so it would do what I wanted/needed it to do. At times, the fabric nearly managed to wrestle me to the ground instead, but eventually I beat it into shape. Without even breaking any sewing needles, which is a bit of a miracle! I’m quite happy with how it turned out in general – it feels a bit odd having such a heavy dress (usually I make them out of craft cottons, which are nice and lightweight) and the skirt sticks out quite a bit due to the fabric weight, but it actually feels quite nice to wear! And it’s definitely more of a winter dress than many I own. I suspect I’ll get quite a bit of wear out of it in winter, with tights and boots and a cardigan over the top. :-)
For the pocket trim, I used some vintage bias binding given to me by my lovely friend Hillarie. I’m debating whether or not to use some for trim around the neck as well – I keep changing my mind, so haven’t done anything about it yet. I do find it a bit amusing that I inadvertently ended up making one of the dresses on the cover, with it’s white and green combination! I was originally planning on making one of the styles with the collars (apparently they’re called ‘revers’, who would have guessed?) but after I cut them out I decided that the fabric was too heavy so ended up just making the basic neckline style.
I think I’ll make this pattern up again – it was nice and easy and it worked quite well. I’ll drop the waist by about 1.5cm next time though, as it’s sitting a bit high on me. I did a small bust adjustment on the dress as well, which worked out quite well (yay for princess seams! So easy to do a SBA on!) and I’ll repeat that in the future. I’m curious as to how this will turn out in a lighter fabric as well, especially since the skirt is cut on the bias, which you can’t really tell when it’s done up in a fabric this heavy and stiff.
One day I’ll also decide whether I want to put button details on the pockets or not. Like the bias binding trim around the neckline, I just can’t decide so have left it alone for now.
This dress makes me smile in it’s greenness, even if it’s too green for some people. :-)