Reeta II: Copycat Boogaloo

Friends, I have made another Reeta midi shirtdress, and it may look a liiiiiiiittle familiar:

PicMonkey Collage

Suspiciously similar!

Scioto Mile Pics (5 of 30)

Scioto Mile Pics (6 of 30)

Hem split action!

Scioto Mile Pics (10 of 30)

Bodice

Scioto Mile Pics (3 of 30)

That’s right: I practically #singlewhitefemaled Named’s sample dress. O_o I actually did search–in vain–for THE floral rayon they used for the sample. I needed a Reeta in that poppy red color! ❤ ❤ ❤ Sometime after concluding that fruitless search, I ended up on Harts Fabric’s website, which I had never patronized before, and they had just gotten this beautiful rayon satin in stock. Yay! Not only is it the most perfect shade of poppy red (which they describe as “tomato”), the flowers themselves are pretty colors, too. I paid more per-yard for this rayon than I ever have for that fiber–$12.99–but I think it was worth it.

I bought 3 yards exactly. I knew that would be cutting it close, but I didn’t hand over that kind of money lightly–paying for an extra 1/2 yard was too rich for my blood. Plus, I had gotten my last Reeta (complete with self fabric drawstring) out of 3 yards of rayon that was the same width as this stuff, so I figured it would be fine. Unlike my last Reeta, I used self fabric for my yoke facing because I found working with such a difference in drape in the yoke/sleeve/collar area (cotton muslin vs. rayon challis) to be annoying last time. I also opted to interface the turn backs of the front facings and the upper collar this time, using plain old cotton muslin which I hand-basted in place.

Randomly, during our “photoshoot,” I noticed there was a hole in this dress–WTF?!?!? I have no idea what caused it (it wasn’t shears or the serger, based on where it is) but it definitely needed to be patched before it frayed further. It was about the diameter of a Q-tip and just appeared out of nowhere. I can’t tell if it was a flaw in the yardage that I missed, or if some catastrophe befell the dress while I wasn’t around. I was very cranky about it, let me tell you; I am really careful with my self-made stuff, during AND after construction, and was gutted to see that my brand new, worn-once dress was already damaged. But I did get it fixed:

Repair

Before and After; thanks to the Fray Check being wet, you can just make out the entire patch on the right. Not too shabby, eh?

So I guess the moral of this story is threefold: 1.) Be extra careful with things, lest you puncture them somehow, 2.) Check your yardage extensively BEFORE you cut stuff out, just in case there is a flaw, and 3.) Keep your fabric scraps until you are 1,000,000% sure the project is done and dusted. (Obviously this fix is brought to you by #3–thank goodness I am a lazy tidier!)

Pattern Notes

Since I made this pattern successfully once before, I really didn’t need to change much this time around. Once again, I shortened the dress by about 2-3″. I did not, however, alter the length of the splits because I forgot. 😦

Having learned from my first Reeta, I did remember to move the pockets up on this one! They are now 3/4″ higher and look much better. (They are really droopy though, moreso than on the last version. Hmmm…maybe it’s the fabric?) Other than that, I just did everything the same way as before–that’s what makes repeats so awesome!

Here are a few more photos of our setting: the Scioto Mile! It’s a really pretty mostly-green space in downtown Columbus, along the river. There are pedestrian sections on the two bridges over the river, walking/biking paths, and even some fountains for playing in, all in view of the city’s skyline! And also a deer sculpture, because why not?

Scioto Mile Pics (16 of 30)

Skyline

Scioto Mile Pics (20 of 30)

The Deer

Scioto Mile Pics (19 of 30)

Someone was on the other side of the sculpture, so we didn’t get more shots with the deer. =(

Scioto Mile Pics (1 of 30)

Scioto Mile Pics (8 of 30)

Not flattering (aka Thank Goodness For Drawstrings)

Scioto Mile Pics (23 of 30)

The best I could do–there were many more attempts at looking “pretty” but they weren’t very successful. #notamodel

Anyway, that’s it for me today! I am still planning on doing a planning post (HAH!) for my summer wardrobe, so hopefully I will be back soon to share that with you. Thanks for reading!

What are you sewing right now? Have you ever had to repair a garment due to an accident or other mishap? Have you ever balked at the price of a not-necessarily-luxury fabric? (And be honest: did you buy it anyway? 😉)

PS: I have updated my “About” page in the aftermath of something that happened a couple of weeks ago. I know reblogging is allowed on WordPress (and that you literally can’t do anything about it, except hide that button or make your blog totally private, should the reblog-er refuse to take your post down), but I am not comfortable with anyone using my blog posts and photos that way. That goes double if someone holds views that I find morally objectionable–I don’t want my work associated with such beliefs. So if you want to reblog a post from here, please do me the courtesy of asking first, so that I can tell you “No” to your face. And never, ever use images from this site that are my property: you don’t want to find out how serious I am about enforcing THAT guideline. Again, if you wish to use a photo and properly attribute it to me, ask first. 

I’m not averse to being social with my sewing hobby–that’s why I have a blog. But I do expect that people will be respectful of my boundaries and the effort I put into blogging and the effort that Tom puts into my photos. If you really want to show your readers what a hack I am, or what the World’s Best Dog looks like, just link to a post–I’m FINE with that. I’ve made some amazing connections because of blogging–this notice isn’t because of anyone I am Internet Friends with–and I have no plans to make my space private. So please, any-and-everyone, respect these boundaries.

Mending Mads

Greetings, Internetland!

As you may have guessed, I have not done much sewing since I finished the playsuit. I am sad to say that I’ve only gotten to wear it once due to the wicked constraints of my office dresscode and the not-hot-enough weather in Ohio up until this past week.

2 weekends ago, our band played at the wedding of two of our friends, and it was great! Except for the utter lack of cell phone reception and the stupid cold/windy/wet weather, anyway. We were gone for 2 full days, so no sewing was accomplished, obviously. And we’ve been working hard on another EP and prepping for our last show ever this weekend, which eats into my free time as well. I will dearly miss this project, but I am looking forward to fewer demands on my leisure time!

I did a little sewing between last week and today, but not on anything me-made: I am trying to do much-needed repairs on some of my vintage! I just got a black silk 1910’s dress that is nearly in perfect condition, apart from a tear at the hem…oh, and the fact that somebody cut off all 20 or so of its buttons! They’re decorative, at least, so the dress is technically wearable without them, but I wanted to restore it to some semblance of its former glory. I found a perfect lot of 20 matching Victorian-era faceted glass buttons on Etsy for a very reasonable price and started attaching them late last week. They are a pain in the ass!!!! They’re shank buttons, but not like you’d think: they’re self-shanked, so each pass of the needle has to go through the hole in the button and back out again, which takes some getting used to. As you can see in the photos below, I marked out button placement with chalk and am working my way up from the bottom. It’s frustrating but worthwhile work, and as of yesterday evening I’m 6 buttons from being finished. Yay!

This photo doesn't do her justice, I promise! You can see my chalk marks for button placement on the placket.

This photo doesn’t do her justice, I promise! You can see my chalk marks for button placement on the placket.

This is what the buttons look like--I think they're perfect!

This is what the buttons look like–I think they’re perfect!

I also have some new (to me) chemises and a house jacket from the 1930’s, and one of the chemises desperately needed repairs. The side seam on one side of the skirt was basically a slit, and the skirt has a big pink stain on the front. Did I mention that I am hoping to wear this in a 1920’s and 1930’s style show for the vintage store on June 1?!?!? I think this particular chemise is rayon silk or something like that, so I used my rayon thread without a hint of guilt. After I got the mending done, I soaked the chemise in Soak Wash, but the stubborn pink stain would not be defeated. Since it’s so old (and I’m hoping to publicly show it off later this week), I am scared to soak it in anything stronger. I will pack the other ivory-colored chemise in my drawer on the day and see what we decide to go with at show time. But you can see why I love this one so much, right??

She's so beautiful! (This is with NO filter, btw.)

She’s so beautiful! (This is with NO filter, btw.)

A close-up of the front of the bodice

A close-up of the front of the bodice

And the back!

And the back!

In Naughty Mads news, I bought several remnant fabric pieces last week, totaling over 12 yards. Some pieces are for t-shirts for Tom, and the rest is for me. 🙂 I got some suiting that I plan to use to make a coat, along with a piece of silk crepe to use for the lining. I also got some stretch black denim (because I am apparently living in the 1990’s) and some double-faced twill that I’m really excited about. I’ll be sure to take photos once it all arrives (if it ever does–it’s been a week and I haven’t gotten my “it shipped!” email)!

What are all of you up to? I hope you are refreshed after the weekend (a long one for most of us here in the States!) and ready to tackle another week!

Edition 21, In Which The Blogger Plans A Surprise

Wow, it’s been a LONG time since I posted! I guess that having a show every week for 5 weeks and working 2 jobs has cut into my blogging and sewing…

I haven’t started anything new, nor have I finished any projects I had started. That makes 2 UFOs and one muslin that needs some troubleshooting before moving forward. I am thinking of re-purposing the fabric I used for vintage Simplicity 7131. I am just not happy with how it turned out, and I cannot see myself wearing it. =( BUT, I have plenty of material from the skirt portion to make a nice 3/4 sleeve blouse, I think, so it’s not a total loss. I also learned a lot from that experience, which will be helpful going forward.

(So between starting that last paragraph and finishing it just now, our tornado sirens went off. While waiting for the local news channel to address our county and the sirens, we put both cats in their carriers and started putting on rain-proof boots to head to the basement. But apparently our county’s siren system works by setting off the entire siren network if a warning is issued anywhere in the county, so upon hearing that the warning wasn’t for our city, we let the kitties out of their carriers and went back to business as usual. It was scary, but we know we can get everyone gathered up and down to safety in just a couple of minutes.)

To the point of the title of this post, I’ve decided to attempt to make my husband something for Xmas this year. Thread Theory has really gorgeous patterns for men, and the Newcastle cardigan is the one I plan to make for him first. I don’t know about any of you, but my husband is all about those knit cardigans with shawl collars right now. I’m hoping to find two different knits that I like so I can do a contrast yoke. I’m sort of terrified of this idea, since I’ve never sewn with knits before and do not have a serger. But I’ve got the appropriate type of needles (along with a twin needle for my machine) and my Janome can do an overlock stitch and plenty of zig-zag stitches, so hopefully I can make this work and give him something he will be proud to wear!

For myself, I’ll probably focus on blouses next. Then the 60’s pants. I’ve also been doing a little bit of mending for the vintage shop, which is really rewarding. It’s awesome to fix something and make it ready to be put out on the rack for someone to love!