Friday, 14 February 2014

I've had better days

Hello there

My last post was so positive but I'm afraid you've caught me on a down day today. I've been through feelings of anger and resentment today and definitely frustration. 

Why? I suspect you're asking. Has something major happened? Are the family all ok? 

The answers to those is that nothing major has happened and as far as I know, everyone is fine. Other than me.

The route of my issue is that I had promised to make a pillow dress for the lovely folk at Grace & Favour, as they're holding an event tomorrow for the 'Dress a girl around the world' campaign. I can't make it to that, as I'm going down to see my dad in Kent for the first time since he moved to the UK a couple of years ago. I've known about this for some time but I've been doing other sewing instead; thinking I'd finish that in time. 

Leaving things until the last minute is something I always warn my daughter against; 'as you never know what'll turn up at the last minute'. My own words haunt me. How true they are, as today I've had to nip in and out of the house for various chores all day and the weather's been rubbish, so my walk with the dogs was not pleasant; again.
The root of my annoyance

I've finished the dress but it's unsatisfactory. The girl who gets the dress, probably won't think anything of the sort and I certainly hope that it helps to protect her and make her feel a bit special. But I don't like the sheet fabric I used, as it's see through. I thought that I didn't have enough metreage of proper cotton in a suitable design but in actual fact, I do have enough. So instead, I've had to do closed seam circle applique to try to cover up most of where her body will be. I felt circles were suitable as the cotton fabric has circles in it's design. I had to do closed seam, as on the main campaign website, it said that they didn't want raw edges. That seems extreme to me and why does it matter but I thought it might have something to do with the idea of giving the girls the 'edge' when it comes to the dresses improving their status and therefore warding off any potential male threats. 

Let it be said that closed seam circle applique, isn't for the faint hearted, particularly the small circles, which I had to do, as I only had a certain amount of interfacing left. You start off by cutting the circle shapes out of the fabric. Place the circle right side up. Place the iron-on (doesn't have to be iron-on) interfacing with the sticky side down, on top of the right side of the circle fabric and pin it in place.
Then cut the interfacing around the circle shape and sew them together using a 1/4in foot. 
Separate the fabric from the interfacing in the middle and make a slit in the interfacing ONLY! Don't go all the way to the edge; just do enough to allow you to turn the circle the right way around. Be gentle when turning it out, as interfacing isn't strong enough to be manhandled really. Turn it right side out. Then use a pencil to push the edges out; making them smoother. Then, if you've used iron-on interfacing, place your circle onto your project with the interfacing on the right side of the project and iron on. If normal interfacing is used, just pin it in place, ready to sew. Then the fun begins of sewing them in to place. I used a zig zag foot which has a guide on the right hand side, which you line up against the edge of the circle and sew. Sounds easy right? Well, you try sewing the smaller circles, which require a very steady pace of speed, to enable you to go round the circle with a steady line and not all over the place, as you turn the fabric round at the same time.

I got to the post office by 5.20pm, so I thought 'oh yes, just in time', only to be told that collection was made at 5. Groan! Well, swear words in my head, was more of the real response.

Grace and Favour have a tutorial for the basic dress instructions, so please do give it a go, as the basic design is really simple. I just didn't have the material or bias binding which I was happy with; they were just 'make-do's'. I think it's a great project to do (with the right materials) for beginners or more experienced sewers, as the experienced ones can add pockets or put a scallop trim around the hem or well... the world's your oyster really. It's such a pretty little dress and so easy for littlies to wear and for us mum's to wash.


I've had dinner since starting this post and a chat with Chris, so I feel more in control now and not so down on myself. I do really hate it though, when stuff gets in the way of my crafting/my targets and when I don't plan properly of course.

Moving on, the positive is that I've made a dress for a girl in a poor country and hopefully it'll have a good impact on her life in the way required.

I'm off to pack.

Take care out there and try not to be as hard on yourself, as I am on me.

1 comment:

  1. I was away when you posted this but I can still send you a reassuring hug!!! We all get like this & crafters are very good at putting pressure on ourselves aren't we? The dress is beautiful Diane! I haven't made any but have sent fabric to someone who made a lot of these dresses. xxx


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