Wherein I remember sewing is hard.

The past few days have seen some success and failure, and no finished garments. 

:: First, a failure of sorts. I bought a bunch of Lisette patterns as Hobby Lobby was having a 99 cent pattern sale last week. I have some shirting that I bought for $1.00 a yard and figured I'd use it to make muslin of the Traveller dress. I was secretly hoping that it would all work out perfectly, and I'd actually be able to overdye and wear the test dress, and feeling so clever for making a dress for a total cost of $4.00. 

Well. Notice that I am not posting a photo of me happily wearing the dress. The pattern is excellent, very hand-holding and helpful. I think I ran into trouble because the pattern includes 5" of wearing ease. So even though I went down a size, the dress still turned out too big. I did learn some things like how to make a placket, and the collar directions were really clever. And this tutorial by Jen at Grainline was super-great about how to do French seams around the arm-holes of sleeves. I have to say, the inside of the dress was finished so nicely with all the seams enclosed and tidy. That was the most satisfying thing about this project. I'm hoping to try again with the next-smaller size soon. 

::I come across all kinds of beautiful linen dresses, or lovely layered looks on Pinterest. I often click through to the original source, hoping it's a blogger making some clothes, or someone selling a pattern for a perfectly drapey dress with fancy pockets. Alas, almost every time, the site leads to a beautiful high-end Japanese clothing store, so I just pin the image for inspiration's-sake and sigh wistfully. Such was the case I saw the Tessuti Lily Linen dress pop up on Pinterest. Although there was no wistful sighing because I found that the pattern was going up for sale the very next day! 

Image from Tessuti

I bought the pattern AND found a local copy shop that can print large-format paper. So no taping the 45 pattern pieces for me. Hooray. I have some gray wool (?) blend $1.00/yard fabric that will be perfect, so I'm looking forward to trying this pattern out this week. 

::Laura and I had another work day yesterday. 

She's working on a secret sewing project and I'm starting a Alabama Chanin short fitted top. It's going to be my first heavily-embellished garment with a black top layer and dark gray inner layer. I'm using the facets stencil with gray paint, and plan to do reverse applique with some beads. We already made a muslin of the pattern, and other than raising the neckline a bit, it fits perfectly. It feels great to know for sure that it will fit, since I'll be investing so much handwork time. Happily, the pieces just barely fit on a men's large t-shirt, so I was able to use thrift-store shirts that Laura shared with me. I have a bit more stencil-cutting to do, but am hoping to get stitching on this soon. 

I'm still making good progress on my sweater, will share more about that soon. Do you have any favorite clothing sewing patterns? I'd love it if you share any in the comments.

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