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Friday, 15 April 2016

Dottie Angel Dress Making


I can't remember where I first spotted the pattern for the Dottie Angel dress, but it stuck in my mind, and last week I just fancied keeping my hand in with a bit of dress making. 

I bought the pattern for the dress from the Simplicity website, it is pattern number 1080.  I could see from the style that it would be easy to make, although I was clearly more rusty than I thought as I did make a few mistakes along the way.  These were totally down to the fact that I was over confident and didn't read the instructions carefully!  



I also made a bit of a mistake by using this needle cord as its thickness made it react differently to normal cotton, by this I mean that it went a bit poofly and stuck out rather than draping, but I really wanted to use it as I have been longing to have something made in this beautiful fabric.  

I think its harking back to the 1970's when corduroy was king of the trendy fabrics, it's a great weight fabric for chilly days and I wanted to layer this dress over t-shirt and leggings for this in-between weather. 

Did you know that the lines in corduroy are called wales, so the thickness of the lines of tufts are counted by the inch, thick cord being lower number of wales, and thin fine cord like this is a higher number of wales.  This fabric is from a patchwork shop and is Japanese, I chose the designs because they also look a bit 70's to me. 




Since I took these photos I have started to make some alterations to the shape, I think that this is the beauty of making your own clothes, to personalise the pattern.  

I usually start with the pattern and follow it closely, but I do find that often pattern made clothes come up a bit big so on hindsight I should have cut this a size smaller, also perhaps my seams are not as thick as they should be.  So I've unpicked the sides to shape the arm hole a bit more and reduce the width of the dress around the bust area.  




My vintage mannequin is considerable smaller than myself, I don't use it for size but to help with placement.  It's useful when making or altering clothes to see them on a mannequin and pin things in place.

The dress is still a work in progress but I wanted to put this post out for Friday Faceless Portrait, a hashtag started by Sarah Lou of Lapin Blu.

The dress is designed by Tif, an Engish lady living in North Carolina, who has created the Dottie Angel brand.  She has done a few designs for Simplicity patterns and this dress is also available for children. Her blog is full of craft and granny chic although Tif has hung up her blogging hat, but it's still worth checking out for ideas of things to make.

I didn't have any bias binding so as the ribbon ties were made in a thinner fabric (the cord would have been too thick), I used it to edge the pockets as well.  I have skipped a few things that you are supposed to do because I tend to cut corners when making for myself.

The first time making a pattern is always a bit hit and miss, but once you have figured out what you want different it will be quicker to repeat. So I'm just about to see how it looks with minor adjustments and maybe finish it or do some more tweaking.  The Great British Sewing Bee is coming soon, early May, just to put us all to shame.  

Matt Chappell who won last year has got a great blog and has also created a fun project for making a "Sew A Saurus" dinosaur tail for children.  You can find Matt and Gemma Chappell over at Sew What's New.

Next week will be time for some Urban Jungle Blogging, hope you have a lovely week, see you over on Instagram.




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