My life is to make everything around me beautiful.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Being Creative with Dress Making

First of all look at these shoes my daughter gave me because they were too big for her. (Shortest woman in my family but biggest feet!) Well, they fit my left foot just fine but the right one is just too big. *Sniff and sob*...... I made these adorable little bows for them and wore them to the optometrist the other day with dark blue slacks and a bright red blazer and did I turn heads!! I am not a fashion plate by ANY stretch of the imagination but I certain was colorful that day especially with a PINK shirt underneath the red blazer. But I think I'm going to have to sell these shoes on ebay!!! I've tried to find them in a smaller size so I could have one fit the right foot properly but no luck. I think I looked like a duck walking in to the optometrist's office in them but I got the royal treatment, I tell ya!! It pays to go "dressed" a bit even here in Idaho! *Smile*.......~*~

Day #1
I love this fabric. It's silky polyester in a true bright red with white polka dots. I needed 5 3/8 yards to make this simple A-line dress. I have that much.........but it's in 2 pieces. I'm going to have to get creative with it. So today I've pulled the cutting table into the living room (I still can't extend it in the craft/sewing room) and trying to figure out how I can cut it. It might be in there all day! Hubs will take me out to dinner tonight for sure as .................well, just because I'm telling him to actually! This is really taking a lot of thinking and creativity. Maybe I'll cut it off a bit higher above the knee, find another silky polyester in coordinating fabric and sew it on the bottom. I've been thinking of taking a ribbon and sewing it down the middle on a piece of fabric while twisting it as I go.

Then I found this at a fabric store and thought of using this as a ruffle around the bottom. But..........

Then things went awry and the "FUN" began! *Sigh*........

I've had this pattern for many years and it's a simple A-line dress. You can sash it if you want. Anyway, having made it several times I thought I'd just breeze through it with the modifications I mentioned above. When I got through cutting it out of those 2 pieces of fabric I had a lot left over and couldn't figure out why.

I put it aside for a day and then picked it up this morning (saturday) and began sewing. I knew I was in trouble when the 2 front pieces didn't match. I had inadvertently cut all four panels out the wrong way. No need to explain here just believe me when I say I messed it up royally! So what to do???? I made half of the dress with the right side out and the other side with the wrong side out. If you think this is easy to understand or even explain to you, I don't even wanna hear it, chicks. Try sewing all the pieces together and realizing you're using BOTH sides and......well, just trust me, it ain't easy!

Now, I hate to throw away fabric and a friend suggested making something for a child to wear and sell it on ebay to recoup my money. Nope, I love that fabric and that is all I could find. I called around to every fabric store in this area and beyond. I tried finding it on line. I went to a popular seller on ebay and websites looking for that fabric. None to be found.

Day #2
I also realized that if I used the "ribbon embroidery" fabric above it might look too weird. As if!! I had already started ripping the leftover fabric into strips because there simply wasn't enough to cut out any more dress panels. So I made a ruffle. So the right side in the pictures below (my left as I have the dress on) is the "wrong" side of the fabric and the other side is the "right" side of the fabric. Photos below are during construction.

The finished dress. I plan on wearing it to church on sunday. I'm sure I'll get stares, but I shall hold my head up high and just tell them it's a "blogging experience" or better yet a "blogging experiment"!! Trust me, I did NOT do this for a blog post but you know me well enough now that there would definitely be a blog post about this fiasco.

With the ruffle, which I like actually, I now look like a FLAMENCO COURT JESTER! I have no shame, I tell ya. Hold me back here!!! *Sigh*


  1. CUTE CUTE very cute!!
    And even with one side "wrong" it still looks very cute and pretty! Wanna see a picture of you wearing it, and I bet you will get some stares at church :)

  2. THat dress is really cute! Love the fabric!Jen

  3. So cute. Here's what I would do to make it "on purpose". Find a pair of red and white shoes. Or, create your shoe clips with red and white.

    Take some scraps of the fabric and make a fabric rose using both the wrong side and right sides of the fabric. Pin that on as a brooch, with a nice layer of white underneath it so it pops out against the red and white polka dots of the dress (doesn't get lost in other words).

    Use some jewelry that has both red and white.


  4. Darling dress and shoes!
    Hugs, Susan

  5. I actually like it better that way!! Makes it really different (just like its owner). Very sweet, Connie. I'd bet no one would even know, if you didn't point it out. Love to hear what the comments were.

    Aunt May's Cottage

  6. Hi Connie,

    You did a marvelous job. My hat is off to you. I keep saying that one of these days I will get out my sewing machine. One of these days...
    have a great week.


  7. Connie..this is soooooo cute! But then again, I have always had a love of polkadots!


  8. Having had another, closer look at that dress... dare I say RICK RACK BRAID? Just go for it like you meant it - right down the centre front & back seams, so it looks like you meant the fabric to be a slightly different colour, and people will think you planned it that way.

    When I said ruffle in the other posts, I meant to say ANOTHER ruffle. You looked like you had enough fabric left, so why not add another one below the first one and get your length that way. And leave the belt off (skim in with larger darts or seam allowance at the waist).

    Re the shoes - dynamite - you could try one of those half-inner-sole jobs they sell for slingback sandals, fits under the ball of your foot only. This would make the shoe tighter, and wouldn't show. Just a suggestion.

    Can't wait to see your post next week - hope we'll see The Final Solution!

  9. Well, I gotta tell YOU that I have now listed you on my sidebar as one of my favorites...heck maybe the only favorite. Your dressmaking skills are way better than mine...I once cut out a pattern on the fold lines. (this was when I was in high school trying to learn how to sew.) Well, I'm telling you! If that wasn't a mess and I was besides myself trying to figure out what I should do...So, I went back to the fabric store and bought some more fabric(they still had some)and just started over. But, I see you could not do that as there was no more fabric.

    What a great job you did. I "love" that ruffle and when you went to church today I know you held you head up high and marched right in there like you were part of the Royal Court and not the Court Jester!

    As usual, again I am laughing until I'm crying. You really should be a comedian.

    P.S. After taking first level sewing in high school I did make a coulette dress which I later sold to a girl who wanted to buy it for the cost of the material $7.00 and I thought that was a DEAL. I left that class really dumbfounded and years later, all I'm able to make are sachets!!!

  10. See Kris thinks you should be a comedianne too! The inside out thing works because you did it on both sides. I am impressed as I doubt I could even sew a dress anymore.

    Roberta Anne

  11. Hey Connie; Hey we all do a mess up with cutting of fabric. I do love the fabric, and the dress is so pretty, just think you could start a new fashion trend... I love it,, I hope to see a photo of you in it...


  12. Amazing Connie how you were able to turn this situation around. You don't even sound stressed about it. I recon I would have been ripping my hair out.
    Hugs ~ Kerryanne

  13. Okay, so I'm asking... Why didn't you wear the dress on Sunday?

    Look too cute!!! Ruffles and all, so why on earth did you not wear it?


  14. I love the dress!!! You are a woman of many talents! I'm sure you looked very pretty at church on Sunday!!


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