Hello my darlings. Yes, I've been in sort of a de facto hiding, sewing my little hands to shreds. Why? I dunno. As Captain Kirk once said about the most important reason for climbing a mountain, "because it's there."
First, here's a look at the golden dress. The crinkly satin fabric is shiner than I'd remembered, but I believe the results are fetching, made even better by those black lace mitts I picked up at an antique store. This is one of those rare times when fabric and pattern come together to be amazing, and even though it's meant to be of average difficulty as I remember, I did as well as I could with it and it looks just the way it's supposed to. The hem's a bit less than I could do, but it looks all right from the outside. The crinkle actually works in my favor.
I then turned my attention to a 1931 pattern (that's Vogue Vintage, for those of you keeping track. I know there's a lot of you). Imagine my surprise and slight horror when I noticed that I'd cut pieces for a size 8. In fact, my pattern was all size 8. I'd gotten this pattern ages ago, and on the outside it had size 6 in the list of measurements, which it typically only does if a size 6 is available. However, I looked at it more closely, at the cutting layouts, and determined that in fact there is no size 6. More to the point, I examined previous patterns and determined that this pattern has so little ease that it would probably fit properly, unlike my size 6 skirts with similar lack of ease...they tend to be a little snug late in the day.
Crisis averted. I took in an eighth of an inch more on seam allowances where appropriate though, just to tighten it up a hair.
I tried on the dress on Sunday, and I have to say I was a little distressed. It seemed like it was going to be not so great. The hips fit perfectly, but the waist was almost baggy. this is a belted dress, but even when I tried it with a trial belt it seemed like it would be too big. I resolved not to judge too early, and to just go with it and finish the dress as directed. I was glad I did so, because it came out fine, and when I put it on, I realized that it fit almost perfectly. It's supposed to have a little bit of overhang above the belt, as you can see from the front shot. The back in the closeup looks quite wrinkly and even badly sewn, but it's actually a few other factors: the way the light catches the pleat, and the fact I'm turning around. Also, I didn't have it quite pulled up properly above the belt, and it is just the tiniest bit big in the waist, which always on me shows up in the back because I have such a long back. Certainly, I didn't sew it perfectly, but I spent quite a lot of time examining pictures I took, and have determined it's as it should be. My next plan in relation to this dress is to use some gorgeous velvety fur-type fabric I have in a slightly pink silver and make a cape. I'm doing another dress first, but then I'll do the cape. I'm nervous about that because I haven't worked with such a sumptuous fabric before, at least in this context, but we shall see. I don't know how much longer my energy will hold out but the act of creation is sort of alluring to me right now.
If you're wondering why all the pictures, someone sensible once told me I should make a scrapbook of all my sewing projects, good and bad. I haven't really gotten down to the scrapbooking part of it yet, but I did take pictures of a few older projects and will continue with that track in the hopes of someday logging it all.