(I toyed with the Kylie-tastic “Butter the Devil You Sew” but thought
butter better of it.)
I fell in love with the yellow cocktail dress in the 11/07 Burda WOF magazine, with its wide, square neckline and fabulous 90 degree front darts, and it just so happened that I had just the right amount of butter-yellow duchess satin leftover from James’s pirate coat lining to sew this up. Since the satin was so thick I opted to omit the lining and just go for facings instead, which made this an even quicker project.
Together with my matching fascinator and steel grey satin gloves from the V&A gift shop, I rather overfulfilled the “glam attire” required for my neighbour’s lighting up party on Friday night.
As James was ill and it’s currently 30 degrees Fahrenheit inside our boat, I’m afraid that’s the only in-the-flesh photo there’s going to be for a while. The following detail shots were taken on my dressform, which is now about an inch bigger than me and entirely un-squishable, so disregard the fitting wrinkles and facing ridges, as I swear they aren’t there when I’m actually wearing it (see why I usually go for the modelling photoshoots?).
As if my life isn’t busy enough right now, what with my full time job, training for a 10k, living in a building site with no heating (and a diesel stove that seriously nearly exploded and killed us all last night), I posted the first photo on another sewing place yesterday after people were begging to see it, and I got the following response:
“that hem is absolutely terrible. It shouldn’t be visible like that at all.”
No helpful advice, no “hey that invisible zipper is fucking amazing and your 90 degree darts have no puckers and wow I can’t believe you made that fascinator”, just plain old bitchiness because I disagreed with this particular fashion school student that an overlocker is not 100% necessary for sewing knits. How bitchy and self-serving can you get…
I’m usually one to just let stuff like this slide (I’ve had a website for 12 years now, I know when to NOT answer angry and crazy emails), but I felt it needed pointing out that sewing is NOT my day job. This is not my life, but it’s a huge accomplishment for me that I can fit it into my life at all, and if I end up wearing an imperfectly pressed hem (and it is a pressing issue, mostly because my sewing room is so cold my tailor’s shears actually hurt to touch them and my fingers get numb to the point of not functioning) to one late night party so I can have a bit of glamour injected into my otherwise DIY– and diesel-filled life, then why should I care if some anonymous internet person doesn’t like it?
I’m just glad I’m not a beginner to whom such catty comments might actually discourage into not trying again. I’ve been doing this for so long that I do it for the love of sewing, not to hold up for some sort of peer congratulatory back-slapping. If the internet would die tomorrow, I’d still be sewing, and I’d be making a glamourous evening dress to wear to the apocalypse. Dodgy hem included.
Update: I had the last laugh in the end. This dress appeared as a full colour centrefold in a major London newspaper less than a month after its creation. I fixed the hem easily enough for the high profile photoshoot, but personalities are far, far harder to change.