Lady Skater Dress No.2 for Autumn plus Zinnia Skirt Muslin

Well,  I think I’ve found my favourite dress pattern, for now anyway, so here’s another version of the Lady Skater Dress.  This time, I made it for ME, and I used some lovely Liberty of London jersey – yes, jersey, who knew?  Well, they knew at Sewbox ‘cos that’s where I bought it but I only ever really thought of tana lawn when thinking of Liberty fabric before.  Anyway, the first pic is a silly, take it yourself in your daughter’s bedroom because everybody else is out and you can’t wait, type of photograph but, also, the autumn colours came out really well here and in the next photos, in the garden, they don’t look quite as bright.  As a bonus, my physog is hidden by the camera so even more reason to like this one best!

SkaterDressNo2 LibertyJersey1

Oh, here I am. having changed grungy boots for cream patent court shoes – don’t ask me why because even I don’t know – and gazing at the hem as if I have done something magic with a twin needle which, indeed, I have.  Interestingly, I had to revert to my trusty old(ish) Singer for that as my Janome doesn’t seem to have the capability or, if it does, I haven’t found out about it.Skater Dress No.2 Liberty Jersey (2)Who knows what is happening here.  I look as if I am calling all the creatures of the woodland to come and gaze at my creation but, really, I just wanted to show you the back of the dress which isn’t crinkly when I’m not performing.

Skater Dress No.2 Liberty Jersey (1)That’s better, a good shot of the frock and not so much of me.  I have to say that, at the time I was buying this Liberty fabric, I didn’t realise they do both cotton and viscose jersey and this is the latter.  It is four way stretch and very drapey so time will tell if the dress will pull out of shape.  I will have to wear it for a whole day to see what happens.  However, the clear elastic which the pattern tells you to put around the bottom of the bodice pieces should ensure nothing too hideous occurs.  By the way, it’s quite hard to find that elastic – I had to spend even longer trawling the internet than usual – but it really does seem to do the job

Skater Dress No.2 Liberty Jersey (4)I have learnt that the sizing seems to be dependent on the fabric you use.  The last one, made in not such stretchy jersey, was a little tight but, as I had made it primarily as a muslin but in some sale price fabric I knew my daughter would like I could still put it to use.   This time, even though I made the same size, it fits perfectly.   Also, I notice that the waistline on this version appears to have dropped a little which might be to do with the stretchier fabric or I might have added a little on when I cut it out .  I don’t actually mind the slightly dropped waist and, anyway, I couldn’t adjust it because it would have made the skirt too short – as it was I only took up 0.5 inches for a hem.  I know you can leave knit fabrics unhemmed as they don’t fray but it doesn’t seem quite right somehow.

My last make of the summer was the Jasmine blouse from Colette patterns.  I bought the pattern when I was in the U.K. in July so I at least saved the cost of the postage.  I made the version with the notched cuffs rather than the gathered  sleeves which I thought might be a bit ‘puffy’ for me.  Although I think these ties were meant to be the ones you tie them in a bow, I haven’t because it would make a very underwhelming one and, next time, I would make these quite a bit longer.

ColettePatternJasmineAlso, next time, I might make it in something a little less extravagant – this one is Liberty (again!) – and because it is cut on the bias, it eats up the fabric.  I would also go down a size because there seemed to be quite a bit of ease and I ended up adjusting the neckline and seams after I’d sewn them.  Also – another also – I wouldn’t use interfacing on the cuffs and maybe not on the collar unless it was a very fine one.  With tana lawn, the effect was to make the cuffs a little too stiff for the rest of the blouse and to make the fabric design more prominent where the interfacing is.  Having said all that, I like it and especially like not having to faff with zips or buttons so I will make it again for next year.

Tempted by an introductory discount off the new Colette pattern, the Zinnia skirt, I went for the PDF version so I didn’t have to pay international postage and also so I could get it quickly and, yet again, as with the skater dress, had a fun time cutting and taping the pattern together.

ColettePatternZinniaI decided I would definitely make a muslin and had a roll of fabric I was given as a freebie which I hadn’t known what to do with.  I was considering making it a wearable muslin until I realised that I had used the wrong side of the fabric but no matter.  I slavishly followed the instructions and was very pleased with myself until I realised that they had missed the zip insertion step out of  the instructions for Version 2 so I had a fully completed skirt, waistband and all, without any sort of back closure going on! Perfect for a hospital visit!  I should have realised before I got to that stage really but my mind was full of side pockets and topstitched pleats.  Never mind, I pinned myself into it to check the fit and all was well.   I contacted Colette Patterns to let them know there was an omission and they have now put it right.  Now I’ve got the waistband size right, this will be a versatile pattern for all year round as there are three versions and you can mix and match and it is suitable for lots of different fabrics.  Now I’ve completed the muslin, I think I will make version 3 which hasn’t got side pockets or belt loops and is a little longer.

Zinnia MuslinBy the way, what looks like a giant metal hand holding on to the skirt, is actually a light fitting  on our conservatory wall.  It is one of many pieces of ‘fashion victim’ lighting that Mr. Tialys and I have bought which seem like a good idea at the time but subsequently appear incapable of throwing  out any decent light at all.

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  1. #1 by Jan Marriott on September 20, 2013 - 19:03

    Beautiful autumn print. I seem to remember having a fine corduroy Liberty paisley print in the 70s and I think I have a fine wool challis print lurking around somewhere —the same print that has been on our dining room walls for 30 plus years.

  2. #2 by tialys on September 20, 2013 - 20:24

    I do love another Liberty addict.

  3. #3 by Sew2pro on September 21, 2013 - 19:42

    Well done X 3!

    The Skater Dress is perfect and you look fab. Lovely autumnal colours too.

    Jasmine is one of my favourite patterns. I too went had to go down a size and the neckline had to be redrafted. I appreciate the tips on the interfacing as I’d like to make this again.

    As for the Zinnia, the pleats are perfect and it looks like it would make a very flattering skirt. Shame about the omission: I too tend to rely on the instructions and used to believe they cannot possibly ever be wrong; any fault must be with me . It’s only when I started sewing indies that I found mistakes are quite common which is why I’ve started to trust my experience a bit more.

    • #4 by tialys on September 22, 2013 - 09:52

      Also, I think it was because I was so quick off the mark in buying the pattern and starting work on it that it hadn’t been as thoroughly screened by the sewing community as patterns normally are by the time I get to them.

  4. #5 by Wendz on September 22, 2013 - 09:38

    Oh very nice! Another super flattering dress. Nothing beats Liberty – I love working with it – just love it.

    Never heard of clear elastic – now I will have to go and google it. 🙂

  5. #6 by tialys on September 22, 2013 - 09:53

    Most of the time google search brings up the clear elastic that you use for jewellery making Wendz, it’s the flat clear elastic you need – it looks a little like clear sellotape.

  6. #7 by Zoe on September 30, 2013 - 03:07

    Love all the makes, especially the liberty prints 🙂 International postage is horrendous from the US! For 3 metres of $5/m fabric it would cost me $25 shipping to get it to NZ… yeah right! And once a $12 pattern was going to cost me $40 shipping… :/
    If there are any dance stores or fabric stores with dance fabric near you, they will probably stock clear elastic,.

  7. #8 by tialys on September 30, 2013 - 09:46

    Thanks Zoe. I’ve ‘almost’ given up with buying fabric from the U.S. unless there is an unmissable sale on. The fabric is so much cheaper over there and, if there’s a sale on, it is still sometimes worth buying it even with the hideous shipping. It does make me think more carefully about expanding my stash any further now though – which is probably a good thing.

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