ottobre 3/2004 #15
my camera has such problems with red. this is actually a much deeper, browny red, so the contrasting orange topstitching stands out really well. the orange came from the legs of the crab applique
which i’ve had stashed away for ages (keep your eyes peeled for his friends making an appearance soonish). it’s all sequinny which you can’t really see in the pics except here
the pattern was simple enough. it took me 4 short evenings: 1 to trace and cut the pattern, 1 to lay out and cut the fabric, then 2 to do the sewing. i laid the stretch cord with the nap running up to make the most of the rich colour. this was quite simple for an ottobre pattern, the interest coming from the chopping up of the pattern pieces, and the pockets. the only change i made was to use zigzag rather than ribbon to reinforce the pockets
i committed a major sewing sin by laying out the facings across the grain to save fabric, but then had to re-cut the straps as i hadn’t added a seam allowance and they weren’t wide enough. it was one of those places where the hem is marked so in theory you don’t have to add extra, but no way was there room to turn under. i did have reservations about the length after comparing the pattern to one of her existing dresses so i did add extra SA along the bottom hem and i’m very glad i did. but then the top edges of the pockets similarly didn’t need the SA adding and they were fine. as it is i now probably have enough fabric left for a skirt or possibly a pair of simple trousers.
size-wise it’s pretty spot on. it looked short and wide in the pics so i went for a 92 width and a 98 length. i think i’ll put an extra set of buttons on above the ones i have, to make it sit where i like on the chest. it’ll then hit just at knee length, with at least 3 more inches on the straps to grow into.
the only reservation i have about this pattern is the suggested fabric. i thought i should be okay with a stretch cord, since they used a stretch velvet, even though i remembered from the brown stuff i used before that stretch cord doesn’t take very kindly to a lot of topstitching. and i had the exact problems i expected: major rippling along the topstitched seams. and of course because it’s cord pressing the living daylights out of it isn’t really an option. i gave it a heavy steam and a gentle press and it’s just a bit wavy now, not enough to be a problem.
overall i’m really pleased with it. it looks much cuter on than it does in the pics. i’ll probably make at least 1 more out of denim or something else easy to sew.