Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Christmas Dress

I know, I know - Halloween comes before Christmas and I have yet to blog about her costume. I keep meaning to, but I want to toss a little dyeing tutorial on that post, and I haven't gotten around to deciphering my chicken-scratch notes on exactly how I created her wings, so it's going to have to wait for another day.

I have been on a real sewing kick as of late, as those of you who talk to me regularly will have noticed. For me, sewing is a source of great pride and satisfaction, and also one of great frustration. I have a wonderful habit of getting myself in over my head, and usually on something "big", like say, a halloween costume or a holiday party-dress for my daughter. The pajamas and little catnip mousies? A breeze!

My biggest source of frustration right now is my sewing machine. It's an oldie (read: older than me!), and it still runs well. It does a straight stitch and a zigzag stitch, it goes forward and back. It does not do anything else, and I have only the standard foot for it. For the most part, this is not a problem. I don't need all that fancy stuff. But for a holiday dress? Yeah, it's a problem. Without a zipper foot, it is impossible (for me) to install a zipper. And it doesn't do buttonholes, either. And of course, I had to do my usual over-estimating of my abilities, and pick a pattern that required a zipper. As a result, I redesigned the shoulders of the pattern so that it had a flap that came over and buttoned, so that I could actually squeeze my daughter into this dress without a zipper up the back. Let it be known, making major structural alterations to a pattern is generally NOT a good idea for the amateur sewer. It can often result in much hair-pulling, seam-ripping, and exclamations of many creative curses. And did I mention that failure was not an option? My husband was not about to let me brave the malls in search of an alternate outfit, and next weekend is the party that the dress was being made for. Good times, good times.

But, I have prevailed! And the dress is quite cute, if I do say so myself. I do think that it could use to be hemmed an inch or so, but my husband disagrees, and says that it is perfectly cute as-is. Because I am so sick of working on this dress right now, I am inclined to agree! Please ignore the grey long-sleeved tee that she is wearing underneath - we will be picking up either a red, burgundy or black turtleneck for her to wear with this dress, and a pair of white tights with little black mary-janes.



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