Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Falling for indeterminate weather conditions

It hasn't been too long since I walked out the door one morning and smelled it: fall.  I love the transition of seasons.  The scent and feel of change in the air.  Fall means school (not for me anymore, but for the boy), Halloween, leaves changing colors, fires, and pumpkin spice lattes... which I don't personally partake in, but they smell very seasonal.  Plus, you know, Christmas is coming.  Yay Christmas!

Why all this waxing poetic about fall on a post about a seemingly summer dress?  Well, the first day I wore this was the first day I could smell fall in the air.  Since then it's bounced back to 80* so it's not like it didn't get some sunny action this year.  This is the time of year in Seattle where the mornings tend toward the seriously cold and rainy side whereas the afternoons can either continue with the theme or be just the opposite: hot and sunny.  Which can make it impossible difficult to dress appropriately for the weather.

Which is why I would argue that a sleeveless dress under a warm, snuggly wool cardi is perfect fall attire.  Please forgive the mall parking lot pictures.  It's a long story and I shan't bore you with it.  Note that the sun came out mid photo shoot and combined with the overcastedness of it all to turn me whiter than I even am...  I made that cardigan and one day I'll actually blog about it.  Le sigh.

The pattern is the Hawthorn once again.  This time as a dress, obviously.  The more eagle eyed amongst you may note that I switched out the collar for a tie.  I was blatantly trying to rip off very inspired by Cirque du Bebe's Sew Bossy La Sylphide.  Gorgeous.

My collar came out a little more school uniform than effortlessy chic and flowy, but I'm dealing with it.  I didn't see investing in La Sylphide when it's so obviously meant for ladies with longer, lither limbs than my own (that shit is shooooort!), and I felt like it was easier to just stick with a pattern I'd already made up once (or twice, to be honest.  coming soon.)

It's ok, I'm still happy with it.  I'm actually thinking of getting some more of this yummy rayon challis in a different print for another Hawthorn... maybe with a regular collar this time?  And pockets.  My God, this pattern needs pockets.  All patterns need pockets.  That's the only thing stopping this pattern from being perfect.

The waist darts somehow don't pull in the underbust and waist area as much as is needed.  Thus the belts in both sets of pics.  It doesn't really fix the problem but I feel like it doesn't look as bad that way.  I think this is an unfortunate side effect of the FBA I made as the first one did not have this problem.  Or it could be because the rayon was a slippery little bitch and my pieces were all slightly, ahem, wrong.  Sigh.  Why must fitting be such a neverending struggle?

See, very swishy.  I haven't bothered to consider a swayback adjustment for this pattern... I know I do often need one but I think this pattern is cut high enough for the waist and full enough for the skirt that one's not really needed. By the way, for those of you who haven't made this pattern yet: the staystitching.  My God.  It's neverending.  There are approximately 8 million pieces to be staystiched.  Blergh.  

I went so far as to copy the idea of self cover buttons.  The buttons are actually mismatched in size/shape a little bit.  They all came from Goodwill at various times.  Even though the fabric is new there's still a little bit of reloving going on here.  I don't think it's terribly obvious that they're mismatched since they're all covered in the same fabric.

On a side note: why must self cover buttons be such a pain in the ass.  It's starting to sound like I didn't enjoy making this dress, which isn't actually true.  I didn't really worry too much about perfection when cutting and the self cover buttons, well, those are always going to be a bit of a struggle but they were much easier this time than the first time.

The insides of the armholes and waist seam are bound in yellow bias tape.  That waist seam; it's thick.  I don't really know what would be the proper way to finish a seam like that.  It's necessarily thick but falls somewhere you really don't want a lot of extra bulk.  I think the bias worked better than the French seams I did on my first one, though, so I suppose I'll stick with that.  The rest of the seams are Frenched.

On a side note: check out my new shoes!!!  Aren't they great?  I got them for $24 marked down from $80.  They aren't particularly green in nature (nor, obviously, color... they're a great mustard with white eyelet trim) but we can't be perfect all the time.  Small steps, guys, small steps...  

Pattern: Collette Patterns Hawthorn
Fabric: Rayon Challis from Pacific Fabrics
Notions: Yellow bias tape, many self cover buttons
Cost: about $30 in total, almost all for the fabric.  The notions were all thrifted
Make again: And again, and again
Final thoughts:  It's not 100$ what I expected but I love it!

I have no idea what is going on in this picture, just that my husband is not good as a photography director.  This picture did make me laugh pretty hard, though, so I'm including it.


  1. I absolutely love it! That fabric is gorgeous and the tie-neck is such a cute variation. Absolutely lovely!

    Also, I am totally on Team Sleeveless Dress + Cardigan, for autumn outfits. Except, of course, I live in Texas. So...that's also my uniform for "winter."

  2. Thank you! I imagine in Texas you don't have to break out the wool sweaters quite as early as we do here. Sometimes I wish I lived somewhere warmer. But then I'm sure I'd miss my warm snuggly sweaters and rain boots! (Well maybe not the rainboots, haha)

  3. How did I miss this one? So cute and flattering! I love the colors! And as always, you are a whiz when it comes to fantastic shrugs/sweaters!