I’ve never met Roisin from the Dolly Clackett blog, but I love reading her posts and seeing what incredible new creations she’s come up with. Her crazy-patterned-fabric dresses are always so cheerful and really celebrate the fun, joyful side of making your own clothing.
When I read of Sarah’s (from Rhinestones and Telephones) wedding present to Roisin of a dress-making competition inspired by her unique style, it struck me as such an incredible gesture of friendship and support that I really wanted to take part.
So, here’s to you, Roisin and Nic – huge congratulations and hope you both have an absolute blast together at your wedding and for many years to come! :)
If you’ve seen any of my previous blog entries, you might have noticed that I don’t really use heavily patterned fabric in my clothing. But I’m branching out for this dress, because it really couldn’t be a Dolly Clackett-inspired make otherwise! I bought this fabric (100% cotton) in Joann’s in the US at Christmas, at the same time I bought the rayon I used in my vintage pattern pledge shirt dress.When I heard of Sew Dolly Clackett, I knew it would be just right for the competition.
I’ve used a pattern I first came across through Roisin’s blog – the Mortmain dress by Gather. I had a few struggles in making this dress and they were all down to either (a) frustration at the insane noise and fumes generated during the renovations of the house next door and (b) the enormous affliction that is my invisible zipper foot (which has now been cast out of the sewing box, the aul divil).
The zip, as you can see in this photo, is a not-quite-invisible-zip. I bought the exposed zip recommended in the pattern but baulked just before putting it in as, although I like zips as a design feature, I wasn’t sure it would work right here.
My invisible zipper foot is basically a piece of plastic you jam on to your machine and it really, really doesn’t work for me. I’ve since jettisoned it in favour of the regular zipper foot – I’ve actually put in a few nice invisible zips since making this dress by using the normal foot and rolling the zip teeth carefully as I go. Lesson learned!
Huge thanks to the Gather girls for being so quick to respond to my tweet about the box pleats – I wasn’t sure how many I should be putting in and was somehow completely misreading my pattern markings. A quick tweet from them and I was back on track.
If you want to scope out all of the #SewDollyClackett entries, have a look through the competition’s Flickr group page.
Skills learned: Making box pleats
Recommend pattern?: Yes! I think it’s appropriately marked by Gather as being suitable for ‘ambitious beginners’ as it’s probably a bit too advanced for being a first dress project. I’m looking forward to making a few summer holiday dresses from this pattern, maybe with the box pleats sewn from the right side for a different effect – and maybe with some cute Dolly Clackett-esque pin-up fabric :)