Thursday, June 02, 2011

Black / White Dress & PR Weekend

A few months ago, I was thumbing through InStyle or People Style and saw a feature on black/white stripe dresses. I loved the look and decided I needed one! I love wearing knit dresses in the summer. I feel so much cooler and more comfortable than wearing shorts and tops. While in Chicago, I found a wonderful knit at Fishman's Fabrics that was the perfect weight for such a dress.

I started with my tried and true t-shirt pattern - Simplicity 4076, view D - and added length, using one of my fave t-shirt dresses as a template for the bottom. I used black rib trim at the neck and had planned to apply rib to the sleeves, too, but I forgot to lengthen the sleeves. They were too short for a cuff treatment so I simply hemmed them. Only took me an hour or two to sew it up and I had a perfect dress to wear on a hot night at the Taste of Cincinnati!

I found some lovely fabrics during the PR Weekend in Chicago. We visited Fishman's and Rainbow Fabrics in Chicago and the main Vogue Fabrics in nearby Evanston. I had a serious case of fabric envy, wishing I lived closer to such abundant fabric sources! We also stopped at Soutache Ribbon - a great little store full of amazing embellishments. As I look at the fabrics I bought, I have such fun memories of that shopping day and the new friends I made. I look forward to making new clothes that will have the added bonus of bringing back fantastic memories made on PR Weekend Chicago 2011!

So here is my haul:

The "Reds":

My PR roomie, Melody and I found the fun knit shown at the lower right corner in Rainbow Fabrics. It's a tie-dye knit with ribbons of trim sewn right on it. I bought red and she bought blue and my intention was to make a simple t-shirt to wear with jeans. I cut it out right after I got home and attempted to sew it together but neither of my sergers would have anything to do with it! I tried new needles and re-threading but the fabric was definitely fighting and beating the machines! I was able to sew the shoulder and side seams and when I tried it on, it was a definite "meh" moment. I decided it wasn't worth fighting the fabric to finish it off so it ended up in the trash. Boo hoo! But I'm slowly learning that "ya gotta know when to hold 'em, and know when to fold 'em" and I'm proud that I parted with the project, rather than finish it and let it sit in my drawer because I didn't like it.

The rayon on the bottom left was one another PR shopper found, hesitated, and decided not to purchase. I eagerly grabbed the bolt and headed to the cutting table! I plan to make a summer dress from it.

The following fabric is one that was being featured on the wall of Vogue but in a burgundy color. Several PR shoppers were buying that one but burgundy is not a color I like to wear. When I saw it in navy, I snatched it up. I think Jacqui and Kyle also bought it. Our group ended up purchasing the whole navy bolt and possibly the burgundy one, too!

The main fabric is the ecru background with small polka dots but it has a fun border that can be cut up and used to embellish. I stole this photo off Jacqui's blog that shows how the fabric can be used. She has almost finished her dress and I may make the exact same dress since I also have the pattern she used (New Look 6799).

In spite of growing up as a tomboy in a houseful (and neighborhood-ful) of boys, I do love girly clothes and I STILL adore eyelet! I found the following two eyelets at Rainbow Fabrics on our last day.

The thread on the red has a beautiful sheen to it. The white has a lovely border as shown and the body of the fabric is a pattern that includes 1/4" holes that repeat every inch or so. Both will definitely require some type of underfabric/lining. I'm thinking the red would be cute for McCalls 6346, View A

I think I am most excited that I found not one but TWO potential fabrics for my Mother-of-the-Bride dress for my daughter's November wedding. I am planning on this Cynthia Rowley design, view C and envisioned it in a teal or peacock blue silk dupioni. Well, I was lucky enough to find just the fabric I had in mind but I also found a fabulous purple stretch taffeta that I also think would be fabulous!

Here are my last pieces of fabric. I'm not sure what I'll do with the black/turquoise knit - I just loved the design. The black/white stretch twill will probably become a skirt.

Finally, on our last day we visited Loopy Yarns that was just a few blocks from our Dorm-Hotel. It was a dreary, cold, rainy day but we were dressed for it. The yarn store clerk called us the Rainbow Trenches!

I purchased 1000 yards of this scrumptious Malabrigo superwash. It will become a sweater someday.


Natalie said...

I am in love with that blue polkadot fabric! You made the cutest dress with it!

Channon said...

Love it all - ALL! - but that navy dress yet again makes me want to learn to sew. Sigh. Two years from today... I might have time...

Lori said...

Your knit dress is fabulous. I really like all your fabric, sounds like so much fun.

Andrea said...

That knit dress looks fantastic and comfy!!!!

gMarie said...

great dress, fabulous fabric. I love that polka dot border print. Been waiting to hear how much fun your weekend was. g

SEWN said...

Cute dress! I was so happy to meet you in Chicago. Hope we meet again soon.