Behind the Seams: “The Blue Garden” Frock

Whilst discussing the themes for TSW Challenge, the five of us soon realized that we all have some blue floral fabric in our stash. That’s how this week’s theme ended up as ‘Something floral, something blue’! My TSW post can be found here.

“The Blue Garden” Frock was made in a baby blue floral cotton lawn I bought from Chinatown. I was drawn to how sweet and vintage inspired the fabric looked. However, compared to the Liberty tana lawn or the Alexander Henry cotton lawn I have recently used here and here, the fabric was a disappointment. It crinkles at lightning speed!

This dress was inspired by Grosgrain’s “Summer at the Country House Frock” which I have been eyeing since last August and based on the burdastyle Wiesn Dirndl sewing pattern.

Photo Gallery

The Outdoor photoshoot

It’s strange and funny at the same time but the sun is always playing hide and seek with me. I took my camera and tripod downstairs when I saw the sunny sky from my bedroom window but once I was downstairs, it became cloudy and only after I have gotten home and started downloading the images on my macbook that it became sunny again. I was very self-conscious during the session as I bumped into two estate gardeners and two neighbors who were all wondering what I was up to. Some crazy woman taking shots of herself in her own estate! Oh gosh! Oh gosh!

Taking photographs of the garments I have made is quick and easy in front of my bathroom mirror but a totally different ball game outdoors. I hope I will get better at it and become less self-conscious. That will certainly take time… Nonetheless, I am thankful that it’s finally sunny again. Spring is coming and I am hoping for clearer skies and hopefully clearer photos too!

Piping made easy

I took the opportunity to snap some photos of how I sewed the piping using what I think is the quickest and easiest way to get them done. Off course I have no idea if it is the best method but here goes:

Step 1: Using an erasable fabric marker, mark the seam allowance on the right side of fabric where you intend to place the piping.

Step 2: Pin the piping onto the fabric with the piping being placed just above the markings.

Step 3: Baste the piping onto the fabric

Step 4: Place the fabrics together right sides facing. Using the baste line as a guide, stitch over the baste line.
Step 5: Iron the seams. It’s done!
Have a lovely weekend! I hope the weather is good at your end of the world!

Seam Allowance Made Easy…I Hope

I’m following Grosgrain’s A Frock By Friday sewalong and this time, we are creating a shirtdress like this one below. Gorgeous isn’t it? Today’s the first day of this sewalong (In Singapore time it is:)) so you can still join us! Kathleen from Grosgrain has also given great tips on how to create longer sleeves or an A-line skirt under the comments section, making this a really versatile pattern.

Like the last sewalong, this free sewing pattern does not come with seam allowance. This is the third project where I have to add my own seam allowance so I thought I’d share the process of how I do it. Off course, I’m not sure if this is the correct method but it is pretty easy and has served me well so far:) So, here’s a very concise tutorial using only a measuring tape and a washable fabric chalk or erasable fabric pen.

Step 1: Depending on the colour of your fabric, use a contrasting chalk or fabric pen and create 1.5cm lines around the sewing pattern. You can draw these onto the fabric. See white line in photo below.

Note: I use a 1.5cm seam allowance because I do not have a serger and in place of that I use the french seam most of the time. If you are not doing so or are blessed with a serger, you can choose the length you are most comfortable with. Seam allowance are not necessary where you cut on the fabric fold.

Step 2: Join the lines for irregular edges. (I normally do not join the lines when it’s a straight line on the pattern but cut across those lines I have drawn). I also recommend drawing other marked lines or dots on the sewing pattern onto your fabric with your chalk/pen at this time.

Step 3: Cut the fabric across your ‘dotted’ line.

Step 4: All done!

Do let me know if you have an easier method, I would love to know it! Have a blessed day!