A Shirtdress’ Day Out

I managed to take my dream photo today! A photo of my princess and I in our matching dresses! We were all dressed up for my  prince’s birthday celebration at his school.My prince’s actual birthday is in two days but we organized a small celebration today with his classmates, including his lil’ girlfriend from New Zealand (Don’t let him know that I told you:P). It was a surprise for him as non of us spoke about visiting his school when he was around. Even my husband took leave to join us in the surprise mission! I will never forget the grin on his face when he saw us and the big hugs we received. Here’s his royal highness eating one of the sinfully sweet cake toppers! Yikes! I hope he brushed his teeth thoroughly tonight.

One of his teachers saw my princess and I in matching outfits and asked if I got it in the same shop. She was very surprised when she found out that they were created by me. I was not surprised by her reaction though as people who sew clothes for the love of it are almost extinct on our urban land.

While I had to struggle with the stool and camera just to snap some photos on other days, my sweet husband  was around to capture the special moments today. We went to the park behind my prince’s school for these shots.

I have never noticed the tree behind us until today. It looked as if someone has painted green, yellow and red stripes on it with water-colour. This is the Rainbow Eucalyptus Tree and the stripes are a result of peeling bark from the tree. It looked amazing!

When I saw the tree, I remembered what my son said when he woke up this morning. That Jesus was painting slowly so that the sky turns brighter and brighter. What a wonderful and sweet description from a four-year old.

In the afternoon, my husband and I went on a date. We had delicious Hakata Ramen at Yoshimaru by the East Coast beach, watched a movie (Prince of Persia) and went shopping at Spotlight. I had to get those zippers and off course ended up with additional fabric and notions. It felt funny when I saw the floral fabric I had used to sew this shirtdress in its original cotton fabric bolt at Spotlight. My husband laughed when I quickly moved on to another fabric collection. Somehow, I didn’t know how to react in such a new situation and before I could ponder about it, we were at the cashier where the fabric on my dress was instantly recognized by the lady behind the counter! She was sweet and said the fabric has transformed into a pretty dress and asked if I got it tailored. When I told her I made it, she said it is a wonderful skill to have as tailoring would have cost over a hundred dollars. I guess I can take that as a compliment?

When we reached home, my princess was still in her dress. I looked at her and smiled. What a good day out.

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A Frock By Friday Completed!

I followed Grosgrain’s A Frock By Friday last week but couldn’t sew on Wednesday and Friday so I had to complete two days’ sewalong today. Here’s the result and my very first shirt dress! My only deviation was the addition of green piping around the belt. Took ages to complete but I am pleased with it.

I couldn’t post more  photos as it started to rain after I took this shot and everything else turned out too blurry.  This was when I saw that there were some floral fabric left. I decided to do a refashioned shirtdress for my princess. The concept is based on Grosgrain’s Mohito Refashion Frock , only on a much smaller person. So, here is my little princess in hers.

Posing…

Playing…

Besides the rain, it has been a rather painful day for me. First, I got a cut on my finger when it accidentally  brushed past the blade I was using to cut the buttonholes. Next, I broke a nail 😦

Wished we had better weather. I  can only  dream of a photo of  my princess and I together in our dresses!

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!

Grosgrain’s A Flock by Friday

Hey, do you enjoy sewing and always wanted to make yourself a dress but didn’t know where to start? Join Grosgrain’s A Flock by Friday, a dress sewalong. This time it’s a shirtdress and it’s starting next Monday!  So get your fabric and notions ready! I wanted to make the coffee date dress in the last sewalong but decided not to because after reading through the instructions, I realised that it’s for a petite form. And The Sew Convert is anything but petite. If you really can’t afford the time to sew a new dress, why not do a refashion? Check out this fantastic Grosgrain tutorial to refashion a blouse into a dress! Checkout that dress! Mama, I wanna try that soon!

I’m quite a home person but today I went downtown for my six-monthly dental checkup in my Modcloth dress (above). It’s a perfect fit but kinda short for my 5 feet 7 frame so I wore tights with it.  Going down to Orchard Road only meant one thing to The Sew Convert- a detour to Spotlight at Plaza Singapura. I bought some zips, buttons and bias tapes for some projects I’m working on and bought these fabric for the shirtdress sewalong. Since I have not tried the pattern, I thought I better try it out with cheaper fabrics. They will be going into the washer later tonight. Check them out here. The floral for the main fabric and the blue plain one for contrast. What do you think?

There is also a Daiso (Japanese $2 shop) at Plaza Singapura with a craft corner. I bought a pattern tracer, erasable fabric pen and sewing chalk. They have a very good felt collection there too. It’s The Sew Convert’s second “gotta visit” store at the Plaza. I heart Daiso!