Sunday, February 20, 2011

Madeleines, lumberjack dress making, French onion soup for two

Yesterday I made...


my long-anticipated lumberjack dress...

and soupe a l'oignon au fromage.

To answer your first question, yes, it was as delicious as it looks... all of it... (including the dress).

To answer your next question, here is how I made the dress...

* * *

I've been super excited to start work on my plans for a lumberjack dress, and since my order of fabric, toggles, etc. from mood arrived last week, I got down to business and made the dress in one go yesterday.

It was the first time I ever sewed toggles (and I pretty much had to make up a method) and my first time to successfully sew an invisible zipper (i.e., so that it's actually invisible). I'm still learning all the time, but the cute things I'm making keep me motivated to learn more and more.

First I fused interfacing to the collar pieces.

I then sewed darts in all four bodice pieces.

After hemming the skirt pieces...

...I gathered the tops of them by topstitching with a long-stitch setting. This is the best method for gathering that I know, both because it's easy and because it gathers fabric evenly. You basically just zip along and the fabric gathers behind the foot of the sewing machine. See?

Looks awesome.

I sewed each back bodice piece to a back skirt piece (starting to look like a dress now)...

...sewed front bodice pieces to back bodice pieces at the shoulder, and sewed sleeve caps to arm holes.

Then, I folded the sleeve pieces, pined up the sides and sewed them.

I hemmed the sleeves, like I did the skirt, by pressing up and inch with the iron, turning under half of it and pressing again, and then topstitching.

After sewing in the zipper, I sewed the collar pieces, turned them inside out, and topstitched their edges. (Sorry I don't have detailed photos of this process; I was too distracted by some technical difficulties with the sewing machine.)

Almost done, I marked where I wanted to place my center toggle with a safety pin, and set to work deciding how to attach the toggles.

I ended up cutting six small squares from the flannel, ironing their edges down, and topstitching them over bits of chord.

The finished project looks pretty good. It's a bit bigger in the chest on Ida (my dressform) than it is on me, but you get the idea. And I'll wear it soon and post pictures.

That pesky zipper:

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