Sunday, October 27, 2013

Blackbird (singing in the dead of night)

How nice it is to finish projects - especially those which are so simple and leave you feeling like an expert! 

This sewing project was an aim to get back to the simpleness of sewing and 60s design. A shift dress with contrasting collar and cuffs. No fussy bows or ruffles, just plain, simple and easy. 

Something reminiscent of the mid-60s. A simple silhouette which suited many, and which was so different to the dresses of the previous years. A Peter Pan collar to recall the clothing of their childhood and cuffs to balance.


After recent occurrences in my life, doing something so basic is refreshing. Being able to be in control of something and knowing exactly how it will look in the end is awesome! 

Especially when sewing with Double knit, oh double knit, how I love thee! Let me count the ways! Its comfy to wear, forgives small mistakes and has a nice amount of stretch. (unlike the now un-trust worthy Lurex...)


  

However - there cannot be blue sky without rain. Everything was going along swimmingly until the hem where my machine kept skipping stitches, I'm not sure why that was. I changed the needle, checked the tension, re-threaded the machine and yet it still skipped. When I made a test on some cotton fabric it was fine. I'll most likely unpick the machine stitches and hand-hem it later on.

Why must you forsake me machine!!!

Silly machine... its being rather naughty again. Perhaps i'll need to take it back to the repairman! That'll learn it.... 



The pattern I used was Butterick 4772 - which I also used for "The party" dress. I drafted the collar and cuffs, though now that I look at it, I should have tried to balance the width of the collar and cuffs a bit better.




The cuffs are fairly simple, though I didn't put them on the way I should have. Why not you might ask, well it may be because I'd had a few wines before leaving work that day....

Here's a tip - sewing while drunk/tipsy is not a good idea. It makes you lazy


They look okay though! 


And of course because pouting is not necessarily your classic 60s pose, here's a little JC Penny catalog sweetness for you...


I'm going to have many a fun times wearing this dress I think. Sensible enough for work and dressy enough for a night out. 

And that of course is the reason for it all - fun. Sewing and life should be fun should it not? Even with all the crappy parts in the middle, doing something fun is paramount to happiness I think 

Enjoy your up coming week my dears. I have a sneaky project that i'll be working on, so there might not be any sewing posts for a bit - but i'll check in with lots of pretty pictures and history lessons in the mean time 

Take care! 
Cat xo

26 comments:

  1. Fantastic ! I love your "new" dress ! Black dress , white cuffs , white collar , classic that will never go out of fashion .

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    1. Thank you! I hope it doesnt go out of fashion - hopefully i can wear this for many years

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  2. Hello again, dear Cat! This marvelous shift dress you crafted proves that less is more. It is utterly fantastic in its basic simplicity and your Sixties inspired poses are the cutest. The doorway/hallway you typically use to show off your fashion creations is excellent because it defines your space and gives you something with which to interact. You resemble a dolly in a box.

    The feeling of being in control, as you mentioned, is very important. Controlling one's destiny and measuring progress - these are things that allow you to experience happiness.

    Your naughty machine needs a good spanking, don't you think? :) Regardless of your problems along the way the outfit turned out brilliantly and you had fun producing it. Load up your life with fun. Make everything in your life fun if you can... if you dare.

    All your life
    You were only waiting for this moment to be free

    Have a wonderful week, dear friend Catherine!

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    1. Aww thanks Shady for you thoughtful words! A dolly in a box, just like Marianne Faithfull's photos!
      Enjoy your week

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  3. Lovely and so cool 60's. You suit the 60's to a tee. https://facebook.com/SassySewingBee

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  4. Great dress! I just love this simple 60s look, it's so chic. I haven't been able to start on my dress yet as we've got decorators in so my sewing stuff is all over the place! I hope you have a good week x

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    1. Thanks Doll!

      Oh what a pain. i hope they finish soon and don't leave too much dust everywhere!

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  5. Oh it's perfect! Love it so.

    But now you've gone and put Blackbird in my head, which always makes me think of Macca saying, "In Liverpool, we call women birds, so I wrote this song..." - why did he have to go ruin it?

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    1. Thank you so much Tilly!
      That Macca - what a scamp!

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  6. It's very cute! Glad it has raised your spirits. Were you using a jersey needle or a stretch needle? I had to use a stretch needle on a hem that was skipping like crazy, apparently the Lycra content of some knits can't cope with just a normal jersey needle. Maybe it's to do with the direction of sewing across the grain? Who knows? You might like the top I've just completed with cute contrast cuffs and neckline too - I reckon it's got a bit of a 60's vibe!

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    1. Thanks! I had used a Jersey, needle as i assumed their the same? Maybe i need a stretch needle
      And yes it was skipping across the grain which was so frustrating cause its done that same seam many times on other dresses in the same fabric.
      But my machine isn't really what it used to be, perhaps i need a new one (sadly)

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  7. Awesome! You look gorgeous. Such a classically Sixties dress, you look amazing! x

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    1. Thanks Vix! I know your not a peter pan collar fan, but thanks anyway :)

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  8. this blog is inspiring me to get sewing! It's the 60s shapes and shifts that I am most interested in one day learning how to make as they are classic, simple and I just love material and want to find a way to show it off. Gorgeous, elegant dress on you!

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    1. Why hello! I'm so glad you like my blog! and I'm really happy that you're going have a go a sewing! I've got some tutorials planned which will hopefully be helpful.

      I love your blog too! ill be adding you to my blogroll :)

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  9. I'm so happy to have just stumbled across your lovely little blog! The dress is classic and your hair is awesome. :) I'll be following from now on. xoxo

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    1. oh great! im really glad you like it. thanks for following :)

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  10. LOVE this!!! I am so loving 60s shift dresses with collars and cuffs right now, it's all I want to make and you are not helping my obsession with amazing dresses like this!!

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    1. Oh you totally should! it would be perfect for the holidays in red or green! ;)

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  11. It's just GORGEOUS!! SO cute! You look divoon.
    My old sewing machine would get antsy with that kind of fabric and skip stitches...haven't tried it on my new machine. Bastard bloody technology!!!
    The purple box thingy is a plastic 70's bread bin!!! It's sitting on a little wrought iron glass topped table that will be painted red. I am happy about the ice bucket, as I had 4, but desperately needed a fifth, as I can't bear having odd numbers!!! (Except for my cats.)XXX Must catch up on your last post...

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    1. Thank loooov! I wish i could get my mums - it weighs a tone but i so reliable. Still going 40 years later.
      Oh the red paint on that table will look better in your house! I have an ugly little ice bucket that i dont really use cause my freeze has a fancy built in bucket and tongs.

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  12. Adorable dress!! My sewing machine skipped stitches too, only on elastic, and I bought some singer gold needles for sewing elastic, and the problem is solved! This pattern is nice, but with the collar and cuffs you made is awesome!!!! Nice to find your blog! Following you! <3

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    1. Hey! thanks for following! I bought some special 'stretch' pins tonight at the shop so hopefully they will work for me. No gold pins though!

      Im glad you like the dress too! =)

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  13. I love it so much! The silhouette is of course amazing and perfectly vintage, but I also love that you went with black and white! I sometimes forget the impact these neutrals can have. Love your style- you are very talented!

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    1. Hi! thanks so much for popping over and commenting! I agree - sometime colours are just so fun, we forger the simplicity of black and white.

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