The dress

A while ago I talked about an impulse buy I picked up at "Oh, Bobby!" From the moment I saw that fabric, I knew exactly what I would make with it: Smocked Sundress by, Heather Ross. This was the first dress I ever constructed for Addie and I wanted it to be perfect.

Even though I totally bit off more than I could chew with my plans for handmade birthday gifts, I couldn't put this project on the back burner. No matter what, it had to get done. So, despite my sister's warnings that it was a bad idea to put such pressure on myself, I sat down one night last week determined to finish the entire thing that evening. Then everything went wrong.

The tension on my machine was off, the thread kept breaking, I couldn't get the elastic smocking to come out right and I ended up putting the sewing machine needle through my left index finger. Yes, you read that correctly: I crammed a needle all the way through my finger. It hurt. Curt was in the other room working on taxes and he kept hearing my vile cursing from the dining room table. (Shouldn't he have been the one swearing up a storm?) When the needle incident occurred, I got really quiet and tried to slip silently into our bathroom to mend my wound. About a minute later I heard him call out, "Did you hurt yourself?" Oh, he knows me too well.

Nearly in tears, I called my wise sewing sister for some comfort as I was fully ready to quit. She talked me through the issues and gasped with appropriate horror at my injury. I re-wound my bobbin per her advice and once again, was off. With only a few small hitches and an allowance to complete the dress the following afternoon, I did it!

The result? Better than I imagined. I LOVE this dress. Most of all, I love that Addie loves this dress. I had her try it on the morning of her birthday and when I had to take it off to pack it for our trip, she threw a fit. Secretly, that made me really happy.

Oh, and for an added bonus I threw together this matching hair clip. It has already been lost a few times, but one of these days she will have them both on at once.



Lee Zuhars said...

very cute--the girl and the dress!

Us said... "threw together this matching hair clip." Like it's no big deal. I don't like people like you...who make me realize just how much I don't know how to do. Good thing I like you anyways :)

Kate said...

WOW. I cannot believe how cute that dress is. Way to go, Sis! You rock. Addie is so blessed to have such a talented and crafty mommy. :-)

Auntie Em said...

This dress says several things: adorability and mommy perseverance. The machine did not win!

sara said...

Thanks so much for your sweet words, ladies! I definitely want to keep trying with this sewing business and see what else I can make--now I will just have to do two of everything!

Uh Jenn, did you see the part about the horrid self-injury? I am no expert and most of the time have no idea what I'm doing, believe me! You could totally do this stuff--I seem to remember a post you did with tons of cute things you made for Sadie's birthday. You're a crafty mama too!!!

Jamie said...

Great job with the dress. I am WAY too intimidated to try something like that! nice work!

sara said...

WHAT! Jamie, that dress you made for Naomi out of the green skirt was adorable. If you can do that, you SO could do this. In fact, your comment made me laugh because I thought the same thing when I saw your post of how you did it! :)

I will tell you that the video clip of Heather Ross on The Martha Stewart Show really helped me feel confident in taking on this tutorial. The only tricky part is getting the tension right with the elastic thread being on the bobbin. Once you find your sweet spot, you're golden! It's a lot of ironing to make sure the hems are even, but I was surprised at how simple it was. Now if I can just get over my fear of puncturing another finger, I'll get back to my machine and make another one!