It might seem as though I’ve forgotten about my pledge to work my way through the very excellent book Pattern Magic by Nakamichi Tomoko but I haven’t. It’s just that other sewing projects (such as ballgowns) have intervened and new wardrobe requirements have surfaced as the weather has got colder. Lately a few naughty new additions to the fabric stash has meant the door to my laundry cupboard no longer closes without Bessie standing outside, her firm butt and her steel foot preventing an absolute avalanche of fabric… so it was time for me to self-discipline and get back to the to-do list! And I had purchased this fabric ages ago from the cheapie table at my favourite fabric store and it was just sitting there, waiting to be made up into something... anything…
Anyhoo, here is my latest effort. I hadn’t got very far into drafting this particular pattern before I realised I was totally going to wear it. Not only was the colour of this fabric close enough to the air force blue I am currently craving for my winter wardrobe, but I think the dress design is so delightfully different from your run-of-the-mill shift dress without being so odd as to attract sideways glances in the supermarket. I think an avant-garde pattern made up with a very plain utilitarian fabric such as this sober blue crepe is a happy partnership that works pretty well, if I say so myself!
I started with the bodice drafted at the first stage of the book. Next step to take a few body measurements enabling you to extend the bodice to get a simple undarted front and back of a shift dress, you then cut out a circle on the side seam and slash the pattern in a sunburst from this circle and fan out the resulting triangular pieces; this is how you achieve the gathered hole at the side seam… hard to explain, but the excellent diagrams in “Pattern Magic” illustrate how to draft the pattern very clearly.
And here is the dress… Different, no? I think my husband was anticipating a bit of flesh exposure happening with this dress, but nooo! … ;) Plus it’s now definitely too chilly in Perth even for teens to be in their midriff tops!... (Chilly being a relative term here in Perth!)
I just love Japanese sewing books for this reason, their illustrations are so excellent as to make understanding the language not so necessary that you can’t follow the instructions. I’ve recently acquired through a loan from a friend another superb Japanese pattern book that I plan to work through straight after this one. Being totally and completely in Japanese though, including the title and cover page, I am unable to supply the name of my borrowed book until further internet research has been carried out…
Dress; from Pattern Magic, by Nakamichi Tomoko
Top underneath; Metalicus
Boots; Mina Martini, from Marie Claire