Friday, 28 October 2011

Picking up stitches

2011 has been the year of a lot of new changes for me.  One of them is resuming sewing as a hobby, which I hadn't done since I was a teenager, and have never done with the zeal and patience that I have for it now.

I sing in a jazz band in Sydney on Sundays, and I love to dress up in vintage styles.  I've bought a few vintage and reproduction dresses in the past.  Anyway, when you're surfing around the net looking at vintage fashion, you're bound to end up at Gertie's blog.  And end up there I did.  At the time, I was still studying whilst working full time, so I didn't really feel up to acting on the myriad inspirations I found there.  But, a seed had been planted.

This year I finished my qualification and found a great job.  Now I had no more assignments to do there was spare time to think about sewing.  And by gosh it was getting cold at the pub where I sing so I thought a long sleeved 50s style dress would do the trick very nicely.  Of course Gertie had done a marvellous proof of concept with her faux fifties dress.  Not having sewn in absolute yonks, her account of using the pattern gave me a bit of confidence to have a crack at it.  I loved the custom bust sizes on this pattern!  I made 3 muslins of the bodice (had never heard of making a muslin before discovering Gertie's site) and made it up in a blue taffeta (didn't want to use a really exxy fabric, just in case).

I was having real trouble fitting it, the sleeves felt too tight when I moved my arms but they were plenty loose enough at ease so my mum's friend came around to help me and off I went.  2 weekends later I had my dress!

Each weekend I rode out to my mum's house to use her machine as I didn't have one.

Our mum gave sewing machines to me and my sister many years ago.  Shortly after that I left mine with my sister because I wasn't using it.  I spoke to her to see where my sewing machine had got to.  She couldn't recall, so gave me hers.  I was set!

Online shopping for patterns, inheriting my sister's fabric & pattern stash, buying machine accessories.  It had started.  Even though the impetus was to be able to make vintage-style dresses, I got it into my head that I could make all my clothes.

God dang it, I would never buy ready to wear clothes again!  And you know what?  Cranky old bird that I am, I haven't.  That's a few months now.  I haven't thrown out my old things, but no new ready to wear.  It's a good feeling.

Let the adventure begin!

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