This week has been scorchio but I’ve been tearing around the country for one reason and another and as temperatures peaked, I found myself at a standstill on the M1. Damn it!
However, I had this little chestnut up my sleeve – my new flamingo summer dress. I’ve had my eye on this fabric for a while and could resist no longer now that the sunshine is DEFINITELY with us. I popped in to The Creative Sanctuary last week and bought what they had left – 2.4m. I then set about finding a pattern that would show off this beautiful flamingo border print and work with 2.4m of cotton fabric.
Bingo, the Megan dress from Tilly Walnes’ Love at First Stitch book. I’ve been meaning to get around to this pattern, it’s a great shape, very feminine and uses lots of lovely little darts – and it only requires 2.3m of fabric. This book has been a great sewing companion and I heartily recommend it if you haven’t yet got a copy.
I had to break a few dressmaking rules to make this dress but I think the gamble paid off. In order to keep the lovely flamingos around the bottom of the skirt with the limited amount of fabric, it was necessary to ignore the grainlines! How rock ‘n’ roll am I?
Flamingos are currently all the rage, Look magazine featured them last week naming them “The New Power Print”! So, armed with my new flamingo power, I’m ready to take on the heat in my lovely cool Megan dress.
I added a white cotton lining because I was a little worried the top half in particular might be a bit too transparent. I’m not sure it would have been in hindsight but the lining does give it a nice finish and it feels very comfortable in the heat. For the first time ever I actually took the time to make a toile (a practice version) in a thin white cotton. I made a few adjustments to the bodice and shoulders, whipped the sleeves off and adjusted the pattern accordingly. I then joined it to the dress instead of a facing and sort of guessed the rest. Being able to put a toile to use in this way makes me feel more inclined to take the time to do it again.
There was however a casualty 😦 The cool mint invisible zip that I carefully selected from The Creative Sanctuary didn’t make it. In a tired and dishevelled state, I melted the teeth with my iron while trying to open the zip out – Noooooooooo! After a quick rummage I discovered a chunky white zip that I bought for about 50p from Sue Ryder Vintage & Retro charity shop in Headingley, Leeds. Perfect, I embraced its chunkiness and inserted an exposed zip instead.
Next up, I’ve set myself a ‘pimp my deckchair’ challenge! I picked up these bad boys from an antique shop I happened to be passing. After some excellent haggling from my husband (and some moaning about the need to make a return trip to the car) we walked away with both deckchairs for £15. RESULT! Anyone else pimping their garden furniture? Join in and send me some pics – we could have a pimped furniture blog post!