Thursday, April 20, 2023

Patterned Poplin

A few weeks ago I decided that enough was enough, I needed to make something for Spring . . . whether or not Spring was ever going to arrive around these parts.

This pattern is from Old Patterns - thank you, Michelle!  I have been wanting to cut into this pattern since it arrived in hand, but the fabric that I had in mind was suitable for a warm Autumn, and by the time I finished my Halloween project, the weather was too cold.  But when I came across this cotton on my last visit to JoAnn Fabrics, I decided that the blue print/poplin fabric would be perfect once the warm weather arrives.  And since I had plenty of yardage, I though that I would try extending the skirt length on the full skirted version.

Other than lengthening the skirt by four inches, the only other change that I made was to take out my standard wedge from the back bodice.  I knew that this would mean that the waistline would sit a bit high on my long torso, but this particular pattern is a size larger than I normally make, so the waistline would fit fine, even if it sits a bit higher on the ribcage.  

The fabric behaved very nicely, so putting this dress together was a pleasant experience. 

I did start to have some misgivings about the length of the skirt after basting the pleats into place.  But at worst, I could always just cut off the extra that I had added.

I generally see facings used to finish sleeve hems on contemporary patterns, or the hemline is just folded up and stitched down, but this pattern, like so many vintage ones, uses bias fabric to finish the edge.  I really need to use this technique more often.  The bias gives slightly, allowing for some stretch, which comes in handy on a sleeve hem.  The facings, especially on garments with cut on sleeves, have a tendency to need some mending when the stitches pull out during wear.  It is rare that my self made wardrobe needs repairs, but I have found this issue to be the most common one that pops up for me.  So I am making a mental note for myself to use the bias strip method on one of those cut on sleeve patterns to see if it makes any difference.

Of course, one of my favorite parts of this design is the waist tie.  I think Mr. Tino likes it, too!

No need to make a self-fabric belt for this shirtwaist!

There were only two to contend with, so I decided to go with bound buttonholes.  Oh, who am I kidding?  I probably would have used the technique even if there were ten of them!

And all raw edges were finished with seam binding, naturally. 

The only real thing to complain about is hand sewing on a densely woven textile like this.  Working with quilting cottons, I forget the amount of force needed to pierce a crisp cotton poplin.

But that wasn't going to keep me from hand picking the zipper.

I have been waiting for a project to use these buttons for years.  I found them in the clearance aisle of JoAnn Fabrics; there was only one card of two buttons left, but I knew that they would come in handy for something . . . someday.  And today was that day.

After that, the only thing left to finish was the hem.

I thought about using seam binding, but decided that this fabric would work just as well folded under, so I went with that application.

As for the skirt length, my concern turned out to be unfounded.  The pleats don't stick out too much with this cotton, so the tea length works great.

I really like the way this design turned out.

And you know what?!  The weather has actually improved!  It's not very warm, but the sun is shining most days instead of the dreary rain, so I call that a win.  Perhaps sewing certain garments can affect a seasonally appropriate change in the weather?!