Thursday, September 29, 2011

Coffee Date Dress, finished

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Are you ready for a few headless fashion photos in which I might look chubby-legged or even preggers (which I am emphatically not, good heavens!)  I just can’t wait to show you this dress I made.  Standing in dappled light and shade of the apple tree made this show up as an odd purple color—weird, since the fabric, a rayon/cotton blend, is black with a teeny red and white floral print.
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This shot would’ve been okay except for the view of the wheelbarrow in the background…well, that’s life around here.  Enough about the bad photography, did you see this dress I made?  Can you stand how cute it is?   How ruffly-necked, and how aging-knee revealing it is?  Yes, I would’ve lengthened it about three or four inches for perfect comfort if I’d had the extra fabric, but this pattern used every scrap I had, and even then I had to piece some bits together to make the ruffle. 
This is the splendid and FREE! Coffee Date Dress, again by the Selfish Seamstress, who, I’m starting to feel, is most likely not all that selfish after all, who may in fact be quite generous.  Did I tell you this pattern is free?  She has several free patterns at that link, you might as well go make them all.  Selfish, you’re awesome. 
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This is a simple little sheath dress with an invisible zipper in the back, and a super-clever method for attaching the bodice facings, but it’s this adoooooorable jabot ruffle at the neck that made me grab my needle.  Oh mercy, I love that. 
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Wait, let me show you my hand-rolled hem—this is a new thing I learned, check it out:
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This is how you’d do an edging on a little handkerchief, or on anything sewn in delicate floaty fabrics that you don’t want to have the usual 1/4” turned hem weighing down the edges.  How it’s done is this:  you machine stitch 1/4” from the unfinished edge of the fabric, then trim the fabric to 1/8” – 1/16” from the stitching.  Yikes, that’s close!  The closer you can trim it, the better.  Then you take up your hand sewing needle, flick on the tv to that channel that shows old gems like The Odd Couple and Mary Tyler Moore and get comfy.  You will then fold down the first inch or two of the (still unfinished) hem to just past the stitching, put your needle up through the fold and then back down, keeping the stitch perpendicular to the edge, and catching only a thread or two, wrapping the raw hem edge under the stitch.  Keep the stitch loose.  Work about four or five of these in a row, and then gently pull on the thread to tighten them all—the raw fabric edge gets rolled right up inside and hidden, and you have this awesome, teeny-weeny, barely-there hem.  Ta-dah!  This is my favorite new trick. 
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This dress might have to ride out the winter unworn, what with the exposed knees and all, but it will surely see some play next spring.

edited:  The link is fixed now.  Thanks, Lynne!

6 comments:

  1. Very, very cute dress- love that ruffle on the front. If only I was a decent seamstress, I would give this a go.
    I reckon this is wearable in autumn with tights and a cardi too!
    Clever you, as always.
    Xx

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  2. It's darling. Now why are you hiding in it???

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  3. Thanks, ladies.

    @Kris--I had to hide the stocking cap I was wearing! So not fashionable.

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  4. Cute dress Kristen, I love the ruffle and it fits you perfectly. I have to say my 47 year old aging knees are quite a sight. Have a great day,
    Meredith

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  5. What a great dress and a fun new trick with the rolled hem! You have so much more patience than I- what with the handstitching and all, but it was so worth it for such a beautiful result.

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  6. It is absolutely gorgeous!! Love the ruffley bits - too darn cute hon.

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