Monday, June 11, 2018

Guest at a Wedding

Okay, so technically, I was not a guest at a wedding.  This was, in fact, my entry in The McCall Pattern Company's "Royal Wedding Sew Along."

The contest was exactly the motivation I needed to dive right into Butterick 6556 using a lovely upholstery fabric.

I ended up adding the belt + buckle, and I used the other rhinestone buckle to make myself a hair accessory.

Note to self:  hand sewing multiple layers of upholstery fabric is not a good idea, especially when a person has an aversion to using a thimble.

I am beginning to think that I am an old dog who cannot learn a new trick when it comes to thimbles. Perhaps one of these days I will spend a few hours trying to figure out just how to use one, but there are just so many more interesting things to do in the sewing room . . . and so many more interesting things to learn when it comes to sewing, right?!

It is also incredibly frustrating to have something that is second nature to me (like hand sewing) become awkward and clunky.  I do expect to do some hand quilting in the near future, so that may be the final push I need.

But back to this dress.  Yes, I love the pattern as much as I expected I would.

There is nothing earth shattering about the design, but it is classic, and very flattering.  I just adore a square neckline.

And no, I didn't win the contest.

But that's okay - because I have a new dress that I love!  And I suspect that I will be using this pattern again.  I have been meaning to make myself a pleated skirt, and this is high on the list of possibilities . . .


  1. Hi Laura,
    I'm a long time lurker... absolutely love your work, it's an inspiration!
    I also love handsewing but hate thimbles. I've seen people using leather thimbles, and want to try one myself. It seems to be a possible solution... tougher than our poor fingers but still a little flexible and hopefully still have a bit of 'feeling.
    Happy sewing! Priscilla

  2. Lovely dress and it does have such a pretty shape in the bell shaped skirt.

  3. Oh, using a thimble is quite a skill. And you probably already know that there are different kinds of thimbles, and even a kind of thimble prejudice or superiority. I came across that when I got to take a weeklong course in London about Savile Row tailoring. Tailors had their own thimbles and looked down on dressmakers' thimbles. Who knew? I was hopeless using a tailor's thimble, but it was too big anyway so that was an additional hurdle. It takes hours of practice. I was able to get a photo of one Savile Row tailor's thimble that she'd used so much she wore it out! See the last picture in this post:
    And Laura Mae, you're the winner in all my contests!

  4. that is so pretty. and I love a square neckline also. And a thimble, I use one all the time, makes it so easy to quickly hand stitch thick fabrics.

  5. Lovely dress and great fit very flattering!

  6. I like the belt and hair bow with rhinestones as an elegant finishing touch. The pattern would look good as a little black or blue dress.

  7. I've never been able to use a thimble. And really nice job of pattern matching on the back center seam! Beautiful dress!

  8. Oh my ! So they forgot to invite you to the wedding, with such a glorious dress ! How dare they. You are pure loveliness. I totally understand your problem with thimbles...Since I sometimes ends up with bloody fingers, and then must stop sewing, I have to try a tailor thimble that is more a large ring, and leave the tip free. But I never found one yet.

  9. I too struggle with thimbles. Recently I tried sticking a bit of thick strapping tape to my finger and it worked a treat (I used Leukoplast - it's quite strong). I cut a small piece to just cover the part of my finger that got sore, probably only 5mm wide. It'll keep me going until I too have a few hours to devote to using a thimble and not feeling like I'm trying to write with the wrong hand.