Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Summer Dress

Well, it's been a while. But, in the meantime, school ended, we now have a kindergarten graduate, the heat of summer has descended, and, in the chaos of two children home all day again, I decided to start sewing again.

Strangely enough, the kids don't seem to mind when I immerse myself in a sewing project. They will happily play by themselves and not really cause too much of a fuss if I'm working on a project. They truly abhor when I work on the computer or - tsk, tsk - surf the web. Seeing Mommy staring at a screen or typing on a keyboard toggles a switch in them that calls for full parental attention, but they are happy as clams if I'm doing something 'analog'. Housework also falls in this category: laundry, sweeping, dishes.

Already they know that computers suck our attention!

Which is why I returned to sewing, to allow myself a lot of non-screen time.

After I had Hannah, I returned to my formerly full-time job in a part-time capacity, in a slightly different role. I mostly worked from home and ventured into the office only occasionally, possibly once every few weeks. One of the times I happened to go into the office, the costume department sent out an email offering up free fabric.

I had just started to sew, so I rushed to the costume department and chose a stack of fabric. For the most part, it still sits in my closet.

Since that infant just turned six years old, that fabric has been lying fallow for quite some time now. I decided it was high time to jump feet first into a project.

None of my big-name patterns excite me (McCalls, Simplicity, Butterick, etc.), which is probably why they also just sit in my closet. I searched around the internet (web surfing with a purpose!) and focused on small, independent pattern makers. I decided to try out a small company called Sis Boom but there are a lot of small independent pattern makers that I want to try, including Hot Patterns and Collette Patterns, to name a couple.

I chose the Jamie Dress because it is girly and can be dressy or casual. Most importantly, it seemed to look good on a variety of body types. Added bonus, it was available as a PDF download, which meant instant gratification.

The pattern arrived in my inbox at 5:21 p.m. on a Wednesday. Miraculously enough, I finished the dress in time for date night that Saturday:

The most challenging part was inserting the invisible zipper. This was my first time working with an invisible zipper, and I think it was only my second time working with any sort of zipper at all.

After reading at least three tutorials, and examining one of my store-bought dresses with an invisible zipper, I finally figured out the orientation. It went so well I already started another dress, also with an invisible zipper!

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