It has been a bit quiet around here for a few weeks – much sewing in progress but not very much getting out to take photos.
My latest project took a bit longer than planned to complete as I fought a bit with the fabric and then waited even longer to get round to finishing off the hems. After all the hassle of sewing I wasn’t sure if I liked the finished article but I think I may be ready to forgive it now!This is the Named Reeta dress again – I made my first version for the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network and I have been wearing that version regularly this summer – I love the swishy long skirt.
I wanted to try it again with a shorter skirt though – I had a really clear picture in my head of a 70’s vintage style khaki shirt dress (minus the huge collar of course) and I thought Reeta would be the perfect match.I decided to make this in a silky cupro fabric from Fabric Godmother – currently only available in gold. I used cupro once before – when I was making a prom dress – and it was a bit of a nightmare then so I knew what I was getting myself into.
Cupro has a beautiful washed silk appearance, it is a fibre similar to viscose so it is washable and breathable, but it is incredibly shifty and slippery and stretches out of shape as soon as you look at it. I used spray starch for the first time which made the cutting out much easier but I still struggled with the slippery fabric and the hem dropped quite a lot.I managed to squeeze this out of 2m of fabric and I used strips of the self fabric to make the belt and casing, rather than using ribbon as the pattern suggests.
My starry Reeta is a size 42 bust and shoulders, graded out to a 44 waist and hip. in practice the hip is very loose so you don’t have to worry too much about the sizing there. I shortened the skirt by very unscientifically folding about 12 inches/30cm out of the skirt at around knee level – I did remember to shorten the button placket/facing pieces as well. This time round I ignored the instruction to hem the placket/facing pieces and this allowed me to adjust the hem length right at the end – and allow for evening up the hem after leaving it to hang for week or so!So – now that the pain of the sewing is almost forgotten (but not quite…) I am really pleased with how this dress turned out – annoyingly I wish I had left it slightly longer than it ended up – an inch or two below the knee would have been perfect!
Does anyone have any tips for sewing with cupro – apart from ‘don’t!’ – I love the way it looks but I think it is too much like hard work for me!