Monday, April 14, 2008

The "Make Do" Dress:

Rayona's birthday dress is now a reality. I didn't think I would have time to make it before her party, but my wonderful husband kept her out of my hair for all of Sunday, and I was able to make it happen. It took me EIGHT HOURS. I don't sew well, and had no pattern, so what do you want, right?

The original dress on which this is based (see earlier post) was called a "Make Do" dress by the woman who sold it to me due to it's depression-era status as well as a large, beautifully mended hole on the front. So I copied it as best I could, and here we have the baby version:

I am really rather proud of this, although I don't think I did any of it the way I was supposed to. This was "BREAK the rules sewing". However, the end result -although very much imperfect - is pleasing none the less. I had a Hell of a time getting the collar to press flat. Even though I had worked out a lot of potential pattern issues in my head, and on paper, there were unforseeable "bunchynesses" that I suppose were inevitable for a novice like me. The good thing about this experience is thatI got many curse-words out of my system, and now feel as though working from a pattern will be like a vacation. I learned a lot.

Initially I had snaps, but wasn't happy with how they made the garment look like something off the rack from Carter's, so I decided to learn how to use my buttonhole foot. Not too bad after a few tries:

I think for the sake of it's heirloom/sentimental potential it deserves exactly these tiny vintage buttons. My placket skills need work, but that's ok. I have made my first baby dress, and that's something considering how scared of my sewing machine I was just a short time ago. I hope she keeps this, and one day when she's older remembers how much her Mama loved her.


Bertha said...

Wow! This puts my little tie shoulder dresses to shame! This is such a beautiful heirloom dress! It reminds me of something from The Waltons (my favorite TV show of all time!) I love it!

Paula said...

Thanks Bertha, but I LOVE those little sundresses you made! -And you're right it is just like something from the Waltons, I think.

EatPlayLove said...

Thanks for coming by, we'll have to email chat sometime, I lived in Saranac Lake in the mid 90's.

Beautiful creations!


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