Somewhere over the Rainbow dress


Where’s Toto gone? My work colleagues dubbed me Dorothy the day I wore this to work.

I’ve just had a glorious four day weekend, with Friday and Monday off to use up the last of my annual leave before the new year starts. Boy did I need that time off. I’m not going to talk about work here as this is my little space to get away from it but it’s safe to say I have a stressful job and some time away is bliss. Anyway, I spent my break creating this beauty and I adore her.



Sideways view

The pattern is Gertie’s Shirtwaist Dress from her Book of Better Sewing as I’m slowly working through conquering this book.   There’s some gorgeous versions of this dress around.   I think my faves are this lobster print one (yep, you read that right, click the link if you don’t believe me!) and this cute red gingham version.

I’m pretty proud of this dress.   A year ago when I started sewing again for the first time in 15 years, I would never have dreamt of being able to create something like this but I’m proud to say that I did it.   Usually in my projects there’s something that I look back on afterwards and think I could do better but not on this little number, despite tackling several techniques I never done before – shirring (it was pretty easy and REALLY satisfying – shirring’s going on everything now), in-seam pockets and shoulder yokes.   I think I’m better at sewing than I sometimes give myself credit for.   Look, I even managed pattern matching.



I did all the  that Gertie called for in the book, barring the sleeve bands – which reminds me I had a nightmare on the sleeves.   Being gingham, the right side looks the same as the wrong side and I clearly didn’t pay attention when assembling the sleeves as, when it came to setting them in I realised that I had two left sleeves and the first I’d set in was appalling out came the seamstress’ best friend, the seam ripper.   But I hand stitched the under stitching on the facings.


Pretty neat, huh?

The fabric was a light poly cotton from fabricland, again one of the rare pieces of fabric that I actually bought straight from a fabric shop.   It was a bargain £2.50 a metre and I had thought I’d played it safe by buying 4 metres to allow for pattern matching – turns out it was 45″ wide (I’m still not fabric savvy enough to think of these things when buying) and the pattern called for 4 metres at this width anyway.   This meant that, where I’d used a tad extra yardage to line up my stripes properly, I was a couple of inches short and had to cut the front skirt pieces on the cross  don’t think it shows too much.

I could witter on more about the dress but you’re probably bored by now so I’ll say farewell.   I just need to work out what to make next…


3 thoughts on “Somewhere over the Rainbow dress

  1. Pingback: Burda Style Pleated Trousers and a Plantain t-shirt by Deer and Doe | Sewcial Warrior

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