Monday, December 16, 2013

Miss Juliet Dons a Rose: SImplicity 1873

Good afternoon, noble sewists! Today has been - surprise! - a whirlwind of wedding related shenanigans. I have painted dozens of wooden snowflakes, contacted every vendor, formatted all of our signage, and spent thirty minutes trying to get metallic spraypaint out of my nail beds. For a moment, it looked as though I'd developed some rare Midas form of lepresy.

Quite frankly, I can't imagine what The Week Before (cue thunder, lightning) would be like for someone who really cared about every detail. We're having a relaxed brunchy affair and I'm still up to my eyeballs in projects. My to-do list just won't die!

Ergo, it should come as no surprise that I haven't been sewing. There are two giant wedding projects that will require my sewing machine later this week, but other than prepping for those, my sewing room has seen little action. The good news is that this allows me to show off one of my most beloved unposted projects!

This, my dear ones, is Simplicity 1873. In the summer of 2012, I made four of these babies, and wore them nonstop. A simple bodice attached to a pieced, pleated circle skirt, this Cynthia Rowley pattern is one of my all time favorites. For my first one, reviewed last year in this post, I followed the instructions to a tee, but these latter versions are pretty bare bones. I wanted easy cotton dresses that I could wash, wear, and survive the brutal Austin summers in.

Despite using some gorgeous modern prints for my others, this muted rose version is my reigning favorite. My mother graciously allowed me to pick through her stash a few years ago and this is one of the fabrics unearthed in that adventure. It's a very drapey rose-print quilting cotton from the late 1980s. It looks like bad curtains.

I love it. Hard.

Blame it on a childhood spent decked out in Laura Ashley dresses, but I have gooey, sappy feelings for chintzy florals. They make me want to curl my hair and frolic through meadows. This one, with its shades of dusty rose and sage against a black background, is no different.

As for construction, it's been awhile, but I'll try to dredge up some details. Instead of the prescribed full lining, I finished this dress with black bias tape turned to the inside. If one is to survive the kind of heat we see here, layers must be dispensed with. Plus, bias tape is quick to install. I wanted these done quickly!

For sizing, I completely cheated on ALL of the 1873s. While I should have done a real full bust adjustment, I instead graded from one size at the shoulders, up at the bust, down at the waist, then back up again. That's why it's just a smidge too big in certain places, like my under bust. Ah, well. For an quick cotton dress, who really cares?

While my other 1873s are limited to mostly summer outfits, this rose print lovely layers up perfectly in the colder months. Today, I wore her with my trusty emerald cardigan, but she also looks snazzy with tights, boots, and a dark rose cardigan on top.

So...there we have it! A frock Laura Ashley would call her own. Now, I'm off to sew endless amounts of wedding bunting for this weekend. Six days!

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