Sunday, June 10, 2018

Stash/sewing speed record!

Some of the thousands of  theatrical costumes
at the warehouse - waiting their turn...
I had a lovely time at Pattern Review Weekend in Stratford Ontario - me and 100 of my best sewing friends! The special activity for Friday morning was a visit to the Stratford Festival costume warehouse, which was fantastic! But there was also early morning running, much chatter and convivial gatherings at dinner or brunch time, and in the hotel bar. We admired each others' clothes (most were wearing me-made throughout), learned tricks for better pictures courtesy of Gillian (Crafting a Rainbow), watched Jeanne and Mel of Jalie Patterns sew up some of their newly released styles, and had a presentation by the folks from Bra Makers' Supply. And then we went fabric shopping...

Some of the pretties
at Ann's Fabric
I had been on a fabric diet but fell off the wagon fairly hard. This was inevitable when I realized we were going to Ann's Fabric in Hamilton. I had heard about this store but for some reason (even though my parents live in the same city) I had not visited it before. I was feeling like I wanted new choices for sewing active wear and I knew that Ann's specialized in such choices. Most of my current workout wardrobe is from fabric picked up at the last PR Weekend I attended, in 2010!
Fabric haul - coordinating
lycra on the left. 

So I may have acquired 6 coordinating fabrics for my active wear needs for the next 8 years ... And I will definitely be visiting Ann's Fabric again.

Another new-to-me store was Len's Mill Store. This is a chain of 11 stores but they are very localized; mostly in southwestern Ontario. I see there is one in Hamilton (which I may have to check out), but we went to Woodstock. That store is massive! I had fun shopping in the bargain bins, where I found a length of scuba knit printed in an appealing free-hand "plaid" of bright colours. I figured I had enough to make a dress of some kind. But it had to be super simple to avoid breaking up that print.

Then this morning I got an email from MariaDenmark telling me of a 50% sale on her patterns. I realized her pattern for the Audrey dress was just about perfect for my scuba. No darts or seams in the front and only two vertical darts in back. The reviews on PR were very positive. I had a day to sew. I figured I could get the PDF taped together, cut the dress out and have it finished before dinner, and I was right. I even had time for a little outdoor photo shoot.

The sewing was quite straightforward; the only tricky part being attaching the shaped neck band. I really like the shape of that band, which is deeper at CF. I cut the neckband and sleeve cuffs on the "bias" for interest and because due to fabric shortage there was no way to match the pattern.

The dress looks OK by itself but I decided I like it with a belt.

Then I took some selfies.

With construction site
next door
With peony
Indoor selfie


  1. Speed record! And a gorgeous dress with that stunning fabric

  2. Love your plaid dress. I think the belt adds a lot. Well done.

  3. Very pretty. Il ike the neck band a great deal. A blue belt would also be very nice.

  4. I enjoy your blog! The new plaid dress is fantastic!

  5. So glad you had a good time at PR Weekend and brought home some pretties! Love your new scuba dress that plaid is fabulous!

  6. It looks fabulous! You always do such beautiful work!

  7. The neckband is what made me go get this pattern. Beautiful work as always. Wonderful to meet you in Stratford!

  8. This dress looks great on you and I agree with what others have said about the neckband. The shaping takes it to another level.

    I did notice that the neckline looks much less wide and deep on your make than on the pattern samples. Is this because you used a small size? I wonder if using the smallest size at the neckline and my (much larger) regular size for the rest of the dress would avoid that really wide neckline that I see on the samples at the pattern site.

    1. I didn't pay a lot of attention to the bigger sizes but did notice that the facing was quite a different shape (broader/shallower) for bigger sizes. What you suggest may have a lot of merit.

  9. Such a happy fabric --love this!

  10. I feel like such a slouch - I haven't even finished all my pre-washing yet!

  11. I love your stack of fabric. I think I would have followed you around and just said "give me some of whatever she's getting." ;)

  12. That is quick! I am being very cautious with my fabric buys since I just bought a new sewing machine and now feet for said machine since I changed brands. However, I would have fallen off the wagon too. Lovely dress.