Sew Loved for Valentine's Day

Saturday, February 15, 2014


Experiment: Simplicity 3833
                      View A, size 8

3 yards Blue Cheetah Cotton
A 22" white zipper (Coats)
Two 12" by 1" bias strips (homemade)
Coats and Clarks white thread


I admit I am not very good at sew alongs. I love them but I tend to go at my own pace. I started this dress at the end of January. I intended to make this dress with the sew along but, alas, did not have the time. I did, however, take full advantage of the hints, tricks, and visuals. I must thank Lauren from Rosie Wednesdays for her incredible video tutorials -- my lapped zipper looks freakin' amazing!

I was lazy and did not make a muslin before I started sewing.  Amazingly, things worked out.  I am so excited with this dress because of the two new techniques I learned:

1. Lapped zipper

Lauren's technique for a lapped zipper worked like a dream and her video was so helpful.  It is bookmarked so the next lapped zipper I can refresh how to do it! 

2. Bias tape sleeve setting

I have tried sewing in the flat to get my sleeves to set properly. I have tried one basting stitch all the way to four basting stitches to ease in the sleeve. I never quite got the hang of it. the sleeves didn't look awful but the didn't look perfect either. Enter my friend: Bias Tape. After watching a less than stellar You Tube tutorial, I made a couple of strips of 12" by 1" bias tape and went to my Singer. 

Oh my stars! This s#$t worked. Bias tape to set my sleeves, swoon and sighs, is awesome! I am in love. My sleeves look better! This wasn't a perfect first run as I don't think I pulled the bias tape as hard as I could have since I was trying to guide the sleeve but it worked. 
                                                                           Sorry for the wrinkles!

I did end up shortening View A quite a bit.  When I tried the dress on to gauge the hem length, it was slightly past my knees.  It looked like a hospital gown.  I got out my shears and knicked off a couple of inches.  Tried it on again and decided a few more needed to be removed in order to avoid the look of anything hospital-ly.  I took a total of 5 inches off the hem.  I like the contrast of the short hemline and long sleeves.  Plus it will look cute with my cowgirl boots.  To be honest, this was my only motivation for sewing up this pattern.  I need more outfits for my boots!

My husband was less than convinced that this was a winner when it was on my dress form (Affectionately known as The Brain).  However, it was the perfect dress for a Valentine's date with my science guy. This week we had two days off becuase of snow and ice.  Last evening it had warmed up to the 50s (13C).  This weekend is supposed to be gorgeous (~25C). Crazy Southern weather.  Short dress with long sleeves is just what was ordered.

For Valentine's Day, we went to the Heritage Ball to benefit the restoration of stain-glass windows at St. Matthew's Catholic Church. Dancing, drinks, and silent auction -- lots of fun!  The dress was a hit and my science geek thought it looked fantastic.
                                                            Got to love a sassy cheetah print!

Sew loved on Valentine's day and hope you are too!

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