It just has been so long since I made a dress for Rosie that the poor girl was starting to feel completely neglected. 😉 Ok, so it’s been like three weeks. But it’s been a lot of fun to sew for her lately… sort of until now? I’m exaggerating a bit, but this project was almost abandoned! I’m glad I didn’t, because despite the hardships, I’m decently happy with how it turned out. It was quite a path to get there though, a path during which I learned I am really a lazy seamstress. Maybe that should be the name of my blog!
This is the very last of the patterns I bought from etsy seller PastCrafts; this one is the Fitted back gown quilted petticoat in white and blue (which is not how I would have described these; more like blue and green).
The bodice construction is super familiar and quick by now. As always, I loved pleating rather than gathering the sleeves. This time though, a surprise! When I sewed the velcro on, it just isn’t tight enough to actually hold the dress closed. It’s worked on the other gowns, but this velcro feels like it has a less tight grip. So I ripped it off and decided just to use the more accurate but not child-friendly straight pins.
Then came… the petticoat. I had never quilted anything before. To be honest, I guess I thought the petticoat fabric already came looking like that. When it arrived, I asked my mom how exactly I was supposed to transfer the pattern, and she got me carbon paper and a quilting tool for Christmas so I could get started. However, the tool is a little rotary tool, which works fine for long straight seams, or even long curved seams, but not the intricate pattern of this design. Plus, the carbon paper with the tool only makes really faint marks, so I wound up using a pen and drawing over the lines to try and get clearer ones. It helped a little but still not great, so then I traced the faint lines with a block of carbon.
The lines were clear now, until I’d be sewing, at which point it was difficult to see them under the presser foot. And making all those little tight curves is really difficult with a machine as well. It meant the design wound up being largely free-handed. It required the utmost patience, which really drove how how impatient I am. After finishing the first panel, the second lay clogging up my sewing table for over a week before I could bring myself to tackle it.
I will say, I got faster and a bit better as I went. Now that the dress is finished, I will actually take back too all the times I said “I will never ever do this again!” because it turned out ok. I’ll just always know to expect it to be a big and slightly frustrating project.
Then, to cap the dress off, the hem is handbound. Which wasn’t difficult, just time-consuming. I love the result but without a movie on to distract me, it again reminded me that I am a very impatient seamstress.
In a nice turn of events though, snow was still on the ground in time for me to sneak outside while my son was napping and take pictures of Rosie wearing an appropriate gown in the appropriate weather! Of course she’s not wearing a cloak or a shift or even a fichu here, but I never know how long the baby will stay asleep so I had to act quickly.
Then my dog Watson somehow managed to throw a snowball at her (how??) and when I yelled went over to inspect the damage. The dogs love the snow! So did Rosie, until she fell back into it and I decided it was time to shake the snow off, go inside, and let her dry off.
I still have more dresses to make for Miss Rosamund, but I think I may do some sewing for the other girls for a bit.