Flying North for the Winter

Ok, so it won’t be winter for ages here and I certainly won’t be able to wear today’s dress for a while but it’s all good. I’ve got a plan. Well, not really a plan more than an idea to put it to the back of my wardrobe and bring it back out when its cardigan and tights weather. One has to suffer for one’s art. Anywho, this is the dress I bought on my most recent thrifting adventure. What I loved about it was the print more than anything else.

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The fabric isn’t good quality and the construction (another homemade one) is a bit all over the place. Nothing a good unpicking can’t fix. Its clearly some sort of polyester blend since it doesn’t breach at all, and the sleeves and collar were horrific. Also rather than a traditional shirtdress and buttoning up the front, there was a facing and a zipper inserted in the back from the bottom of the collar to the waist. Suffice to say, it was difficult to get into. The skirt was fine. Not amazing but not terribly enough that I wanted to alter it. There really wasn’t enough fabric to try and cut a new one. One interesting little detail was that the previous sewer had used three – yes, three! – different colours of bias binding to finish the hem. Clearly a woman after my own heart in terms of cobbling things together. One day I might rip it out and replace it with plain black but for now I’m honour the time she spent hand-stitching that hem and keeping it the same. But the top had to change. Continuing my obsession with the Kim Dress (yep, that’s three in as many days) I unpicked the bodice and completely re-constructed it as a sleeveless princess seamed bodice. A far cry from the collar, clunky sleeves and umpteen darts. I counted at least 10. Having reunited the bodice and skirt, I edged the armholes and neck with black bias binding and hand stitched in place for an invisible finish. With the lowered back neckline, the previous black zipper was far too long so I replaced it with a black invisible zip.

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Isn’t it so much better!? I’m thinking a little jacket, tights and boots and we’ve got ourselves a great outfit. I hope that the previous sewer would be pleased with this, and wouldn’t be upset that I took apart her work. It got me thinking what will end up happening to my handmade items? I’m hoping I’ll love them for a long time, and hopefully hand them over to friends or family who will appreciate the time and effort that went into them. And if not, I hope someone somewhere finds them and gives them new life; be it by wearing them as is, altering them or completely taking them apart and making something new. Whichever way they go, I hope they’ll have a good and exciting life; I know I certainly loved them.

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