I proudly present...the Sailor Dress

People! Finally! Not only did I manage to find my tripod (....in the basement...in the bag with my flippers....and I will not ponder that longer than I have to), today my new dress form arrived! So I'm all set to finally post some of my sewing projects. And there's, like, half a dozen to show so far. Some better than others, some more complicated than others and some...well...for you to laugh at and feel better about yourself (cause I can manage to ruin everything if I set my mind to....doing something extra great).

Today, I'm going to start with my sailor dress. I know, I know, it doesn't exactly look like a sailor dress, but it reminded me of one because of the colors and it seemed fitting considering I live close to the sea with lakes and rivers and canals running through the whole city, so you're never far from water.

The dress was actually supposed to be a skirt, but somehow it had different ideas once I started it. I actually did this one without a pattern. I was actually only trying to practice darts and how to make a fitting skirt out of a rectangle of fabric. I loved the idea of the red piping between the blue and white fabric and since I had kinda botched my first attempt at adding piping in another project (which you will get to see soon), I wanted to try it again. This time, it turned out pretty well I think (Hey! So this is what happens when you take your time and you don't try to be done in record time!).

So while my skirt was still a rectangle, I was trying to figure out which way I wanted it to go. Did I want the white on top or on the bottom? While I was handling the fabric in front of the mirror I realized the color combination would also look really nice in a top...and that's when the whole "Hey, let's just make it a dress!" shenanigans started. For the top part, I used some parts of Tilly's Mathilde blouse pattern as a guideline because it looked pretty much like I wanted the top to look and as I had just finished the Mathilde blouse (including the botched piping), I kinda knew what to expect. Or at least that's what I thought. What I hadn't considered was that while the Mathilde blouse only has darts to the sides of the breasts, I needed 2 more darts down the front, so the top would be fitted. Aaaah! So yeah, those were two stressful hours. But: I prevailed!

What I also hadn't really thought through was the fact that I would have to sew in a zipper. (Are you starting to - no pun intended - see a pattern here?) Which I had never done before. And let me just tell you: I'm preeeeetty sure it would have been immensely helpful to just look up how to sew in a zipper before attempting it. However, as I can't be bothered with inconsequential details like that, I just did what I thought was right (I even bought the wrong zipper - who knew there were different types?). Emphasis on "thought". Cause as I learned last week: it totally wasn't right. But I have to say, considering I had no idea what I was doing....it could have been worse. Could also have been better, but I think I fared fairly well. It closes. It opens. It does its job. Did I botch it a little towards the butt? Yes. Does it look a little weird down there? Yes. But nobody ever looks at my butt anyway. (EDIT: Oops. I just took some pictures of the dress on the dress doll and holy sh**, the back looks worse than I actually thought. Now it's really a good thing nobody ever looks at my butt, because I still wanna wear it!)

The little red flower I had bought a week earlier on a whim, but it just fit so nicely with the dress that I'm only using it for that now. However, I spent my weekend trying to make all different kinds of flowers, so I think in the future I'll just do them myself. Or at least I'll try to.

♥ Nicole


  1. Lovely! It's such a nice shape. Love the subtle hint of red with the piping too. Good work!