Let me begin by stating that I am not an apparel maker. This is ironic, because I learned to sew by sewing clothing. I even turned in a couple prom dresses I designed as an independent study art project once. But the process of making three-dimensional objects out of fabric is not one I enjoy. (My husband might correct that to “vehemently protest,” to put it politely. I am decidedly not polite during said protesting.) It’s also one that I tend to rush through, meaning that my end results aren’t always worth the time I put into them.
That said, every once in awhile, I see a garment that I have to have. And if that garment is a sample for a sewing pattern, well, I just don’t have any excuse not to make it. When I saw the Bebe dress by Serendipity Studio at spring Quilt Market last year, I knew I had to try making one–the silhouette looked comfortable, I knew it would flatter my shape, and it seemed ideal for working up in quilting cotton.
So I ordered my pattern and took a trial run through it. The pattern is well-written, straight-forward, and easy to follow. It would have been an ideal pattern to start with when I was first learning to sew (instead of the plaid flannel shorts that I *did* start with). Unfortunately, my body was not made for this pattern, so my sample didn’t fit so well. I shelved the project for a while, but I still really wanted the dress.
Then I took Susan Khalje’s “Couture Dress” class on Craftsy. Confession: I had no intention of ever making a couture garment when I signed up for the class–I was just curious about the techniques and whether any of them could translate to quilting. But Susan’s lessons on fitting inspired me to dig out my Bebe dress and try again. This time, I actually made up a muslin pattern that I could alter as I went and, lo and behold, I ended up with something that fit great! I also learned that half of my problem with sewing from patterns is dealing with the tissue paper pieces; using muslin pattern pieces, in contrast, is a dream.
I just finished up putting in the facings today, and I’m thrilled with the result. I’m inordinately proud to have finished something that I will actually wear, and that fits so well and comfortably.
Of course, now that the first one is done, I’m ready to start on the next version, and I already have fabric picked out for the one after that…
Thanks for sharing with me. I’m linking up with Fabric Tuesday at Quilt Story, so if you’ve found me from there, welcome!