Wednesday, August 1, 2012

A Stitch in Time

For as long as I can remember, I was always crafting with my mom.  She deemed me her, "gopher", which to me sounded super important. (Let's remember I was probably 8 years old not really understanding the term). Either way, I loved being her gopher. It meant spending quality time together, but even more importantly bedtimes were non existent! (priorities were a little different then :)). Mom was always making something. Usually I would convince her one of my dolls needed a new dress or even better, I needed a dress to match them! We made costumes for school plays and Halloween. I got to learn how to cut out patterns and pin (not in the pinterest way) while she did the hard stuff and anything that required the use of the machine. This system worked out rather well for us. And then I grew up....:(

This is me modeling my Giselle dress from Enchanted (worn here)

Why the trip down memory lane? When I got married, I decided to register for a sewing machine blissfully hoping I could make clothes just like my mom one day! I figured if I had one in the house, I would eventually have to learn, right?  It has taken me nearly 2 years to bring that thing out of its box, but alas I did and am now going to see if I can create anything half as good as my mom.

I didn't want to waste my time with a silly pretend sewing project that I would just tuck in the corner of my closet somewhere and forget about. I wanted to make something I could be proud of! (Every time I struggled, I kept thinking about that easy little project I could have done instead) Good news: Mom was with me every step of the way. She took me to the fabric store and advised me on how to pick a fabric that both would look good and be easy to work with. You should have seen me in there, you would have thought I was picking the fabric for a dress for the Queen!

Next, I needed to pick the type of dress I was going to make. Many of you probably think dress patterns look something like this:

Believe it or not, they have some pretty cute stuff out there. The Simplicity brand was on sale for $1.99 so I was determined to find something in that brand. Even better, Simplicity has a Project Runway line that looked promising. After much deliberation (similar to that of the fabric), I settled on a cute little retro dress that seemed pretty simple, but more importantly, something I would actually wear.

Turns out, this pattern was a pretty simple and easy to follow (according to my resident expert). I still felt like it was going to be impossible for this to turn out looking like a dress much less fit! After reading some reviews on the pattern we decided to go for the size 10. I measured at a size 14 according to the instructions but reviewers were saying the pattern runs small so go about 2 dress sizes higher than what you normally wear. Once that was out of the way, we were ready to cut and pin! (I got a hang of this pretty quickly considering my extensive background ;) )

Turns out, cutting and pinning is the most grueling part of dressmaking. My mother had me fooled all these years! Pushing down on the pedal and sewing a straight line really isn't very challenging. Granted, I was getting step by step verbal instructions so that made life easy. If I was left alone in a room with just the instructions, I never would have figured out how to get past step 1 which was a dart! (for those who don't sew, darts aren't the easiest or the most fun)

As you can see, Milo was never more than paw length away from me. He had to make sure the sewing machine didn't win over my heart. :)

SUCCESS! I made something that resembles a dress AND it fits! Stay tuned for the finished product pictures! :) I will model the dress in my High 5 for Friday post!

UPDATE: New pics!

Also, don't forget to enter for your chance to win a stencil from Cutting Edge Stencils via yesterday's post!


  1. ah i can't wait to see!! i seriously wish i could sew. i tried one time and it was a total disaster

  2. any chance you want to sell the Giselle dress?

    1. The Giselle dress was made as a costume, so it is not super high quality. It would fit someone who is a size 10 or 12. If you still are interested, email me at