Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Three events in three weeks?!? Let's get sewing.

So September 17, 24 and Oct 1st are three super fun events I really want to attend. A Pink Tea, a Train Ride and a Botanical Garden Picnic. I have tickets bought, ambitious sewing lined up and my costume support buddy (Hi Gina White!) on speed text for when I need to laugh, or cry as the case may be!

Let's do this thing! Now to qualify the drama I need to point out that I don't just sew for me. I sew for my super cute MIL Connie and for two of these events my daughter and guess what?! Matthew.(Squeeee!) He had so much fun at Gilbert and Sullivan he has decided he is game for dressing up again.

Event one: The DFW Costumers Guild Pink Challenge Tea. Last year Colleen Swafford found this gawky rose 1980's shade of bengaline fabric and got a full bolt and then some for a steal ( I think she said it was a dollar or less a yard.) She set a challenge to our group that anyone who would like could have nine yards and see what we come up with to attend a tea one year hence. Well the date is set for September 17th and Connie, Emily and I are in.

Today I made my final decision on Connie's dress. We started out with this inspiration.

This dress reminded both Connie and I of her awesome pink and black dress from years ago when we did a pink ribbon breast cancer donation theme for one of the SASS conventions. It has been one of her favorite gowns- and we had pink on the brain. However while brain storming the modification of my much loved and much used tea gown pattern I came across this gem. 

I actually bought this pattern many years ago with Connie in mind and it has a lot of the elements I think look great on her. I got the two thumbs up from mom and we are off. 

Today I read through the instructions as this is a new to me pattern and a new to me publisher. The gown is drafted off an extant piece in the Wisconsin Historical Society's collection and graded for just a few sizes. Happily one meets mom's requirements. After getting a feel for how this thing goes together I started the process of adjusting the skirt length. Have I mentioned mom is under five foot tall? She will fib and say five foot but my measuring tape begs to differ! 

I typically just fold out what is needed and re-true the pattern lines. 

Then we decided we needed a contrast for the center skirt panel and the interesting bodice details. This silver silk and black lace combo is speaking to us. 

Woot! We have a plan and tomorrow we should have a skirt! The skirt has a very cool lining with bustle bones built right in. I am excited to give it a go. 

So in a nutshell that is mom's Pink Challenge Tea dress. 

What am I wearing you ask? Well if the powers that be are willing I am going to drape a 1952 Dior New Look gown that just makes me smile every time I see it. 

My dress will be pretty much all pink with perhaps the small belt in another color. During this era  Dior and Charles James (my all time fave designer) were doing absolutely fascinating things with dress lines and I have longed for a good excuse to attempt one. This seemed the least likely to cause grey hair. That is the theory I am going with- try not to laugh too loud ;)

That will use up the whole nine yards allotted to me for this challenge. So what is Emily wearing? 

She chose this dress made from a lighter Champagne Pink moire' bengaline that was part of my grandmother's fabric stash. 

It is my understanding that there will be other attendees in various shade of pink so Emily will fit right in with the group. The skirt is made for this already so we just have a bodice, overskirt, and some cute bows to tackle. 

Whew I don't know about you but a cup of tea sounds perfect right now. Until next time. What's new in your sewing room?



  1. I'm here for you my friend!! Call or text anytime!! I know you can totally do this!! I LOVE that moiré fabric!!! And I think ask of your designs are fabulous!!! We need a worm hole still so I can go to these events with you!!

  2. Will wait eagerly for progress photos and event photos!


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