Thursday, June 14, 2012

Prom, anyone? Simplicity 3878

Its time for needle and thREAD with Elizabeth again ... love these Thursdays!

This week, I finally finished a grad dress for a lovely girl and dear friend.  We used this Simplicity pattern but made several modifications:

It turned out just wonderful! But ... that was after making a couple of muslin fittings - where you buy cheap cotton fabric (like muslin, but muslin is very pricey here so we went to the bargain section for cheap cotton instead) - and do a practice round of the dress, adjusting it where needed, before cutting the good fabric.

The fabric is a sheer and shimmery deep navy blue.  I think it is so classy.  The skirt is full and poofy because we added 4 meters of gathered tulle, in the form of two ruffles, and attached it to the lining underneath, near the bottom. We call it the "princess factor."

The bodice is actually a fitted piece underneath, with this "shirred" piece you see over top.  The shirring had to be tacked down here and there. The original patterns calls for this piece to be made of tulle - ewww that would be gross to tack down. We just used the main fabric instead.

The back is especially pretty. I love the invisible zipper!! I am sold on invisible zippers and I think I'll do all my zippers this way!!  See this post for more about the invisible zipper.  Also, when adding straps, we decided to bring them to the center back rather than just straight front to back over the shoulder.  I like the design effect it has. 

The fabric was just glittering in the sun, I had to snap a pic. Hope the weather is nice for her special day!

It has this silver shimmer going on, and she purchased beautiful silver shoes. Perfect!

My own daughter had to take it for a test spin! This dress has movement!

In reading this week, I've been studying a short biography of Gandhi because I'm participating in an online discussion of this speech, which he gave as his statement in The Great Trial of 1922.  To prepare more fully for this discussion, I wanted to read a brief biography - so I downloaded this book (to my handy dandy kindle), intended for younger readers, knowing I'd be able to get a quick bird's eye view.  

Its very well-written, like a good "living book," not too dumbed-down for a student, and assuming its accurate I'd say its a great place to start as a read aloud or independent reading for middle-school and up ....  with the exception of one small paragraph saying that Gandhi regretted having sex with his wife the same night his father was (unbeknownst to Gandhi), dying - one of the factors for him choosing celibacy.

This book would be an excellent stepping stone to discussing concepts of freedom, human rights, goverment, etc with your children. Just excellent!



  1. Wow! That dress is fantastic.

  2. absolutely gorgeous! Fantastic job!!

  3. Very pretty! You have a lot of confidence (and skill) to pull that off. And so smart to make it from inexpensive fabric first. Most of us don't have that kind of patience. ;-)

  4. Definitely love the "princess factor" here! And the zipper - excellent work. I use invisible zippers too, but I still do them terribly :o).


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