Too Many Dresses

doctor of romcoms, twee as fuck

A Sewing Lesson

on April 7, 2014

Just a quick lunchtime blog from me today – I’m trying to get back in the habit because I really want to start blogging my sewing! Recently I went to the Knitting and Stitching Show with my good friend Roisin of Dolly Clackett fame. Being at the show with her gave me a taste of what a wonderful, supportive community of sewists there are out there in the blogosphere, and since then I’ve been avidly following several sewing blogs, and have decided to tentatively dip my toe in the water. You can’t just take and take forever, Lauren, sometimes you have to give the goods too.

Anyway, I do have a few makes from earlier this year lined up to blog, not least the “@TheQuill Dress“, a By Hand London Elisalex in instrument-print cotton. I made this especially for a gig I was going to in Berlin, with the full aim of getting some shots of it with suitably touristy backdrops. In the end though, and in good old holiday-Lauren fashion, the only photo I ended up with was a very red and moody shot of it in a mirror in a Kreuzberg nightclub. Very cool, perhaps, but not the ideal showcase of a make! So you’ll have to hang on a bit for her. I’m off to Edinburgh later this week so perhaps with a bit more forethought and a bit less beer, I can get you some proper photographs.

So what I have for you today is just a tale of a lesson, or maybe two lessons, learned from a sewing session last night. I’d had a happy couple of hours in the afternoon working away on my latest dress, a (hopefully wearable) muslin of the By Hand London Anna maxi dress in a silk blend fabric recycled from a saree. Then, despite having already made 3 toiles of the bodice, I freaked out that it was going to be too small, and wouldn’t fit. Cue me sat at the sewing machine at quarter to 9 that night in a complete frenzy, desperate to get the garment to a try-onable state so I could see just how horrendously small I’d cut it, and how hideous I looked in my too-tight Anna.

Once I’d got an almost-finished Anna, I galloped up the stairs to the only full-length mirror in our house to discover…that I’d sewn one of the side seams on the wrong side. Such a basic and annoying error that would definitely not have happened had I not been mega mega stressy and mega mega rushy. But at least I was able to try the dress on (sans zip), and do you know what? I think it’s going to fit beautifully.

So, two lessons:

1) Never sew in a rush. Y’all knew that one already. I knew that one too. None of us will ever learn, though.

2), and perhaps more importantly: Always have faith in yourself. I’ve now lost track of the amount of times I freak out partway into a project, convinced that it’s ruined, it will never fit, I’ll have to throw it out, I’ve wasted x amount of hours. It’s almost always fine. Yes, we all have the occasional wadder. But that’s fine too. And with a bit more faith in my own abilities, I wouldn’t make most of the stupid mistakes in the first place.


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