Wednesday, June 27, 2012

This is as far as it's going

Right - so at (approximately) 2 am this morning, I had an epiphany: I don't need this dress. 

I'm not even interested in sewing it. It's not like I totally slacked off - I mean, look: I made the lining yesterday. It was from my 2010 princess seam block. That in itself should've already given me a clue-  the fact that it was 2 years old, and made long before my current love affair with my running shoes. Then last night, after 6+ fittings and long after I'd turned the CDs off for fear of waking the neighbors, I suddenly remembered that when I made Fleur from that same block, I had to practically redraft it because it needed so much adjustment. And I'd also become deeply disgusted that what was supposed to be the very straightforward lining was turning out to be an accidental -and overpriced- muslin/toile. Wrong on so many levels - the most important being that established blocks/slopers aren't supposed to require fittings, least of all 6 (and counting), and with an impending deadline, besides. Do you know why something requires so many fittings? It's because it's a bad draft. Adjustments won't help a bad draft - it needs to be completely redone from scratch. In other words, in order to sew this dress, I'm going to have to draft a brand-new princess seam block - and accompanying sleeve block. That's not going to happen in three days. 

And no, I'm not even tempted to "just sew it up" with whatever substandard fit it now boasts. I don't sew clothes that way. Either it fits right or I'd be wasting my time because I'd never wear it. I'm only sorry I got stymied this time at the least interesting part of garment-sewing i.e. the fitting, because -hoo!- did I have plans for this dress. It was so going to rock. Was.

So I'm taking my own advice. Remember this list? I'm talking about #10 - the bit where I step away. And once I'd decided not to make this dress for the wedding, the sense of relief and peace and joy and freedom was palpable. 

It's summer, too. 
The days are too precious to be spent sewing handmade clothes, honestly. Anyone with common sense (and especially anyone who lives in 7-winter-months-a-year Minnesota) knows that. My kids are home with me and I'm choosing to hide out in the house, drafting and fitting? Seriously? I couldn't justify that. 

So today I decided we'd go swimming. And shopping for a wedding gift. And playing. And eating ice cream. Sure, I'll finish this dress someday. It's too cute not to. Besides, rumor has it that there are other family members getting married this summer so it may get done for that, if the mood is right. But you know what? I'm not procrastinating anymore. Nor feeling guilty- just glad that I came to my senses in good time.   


  1. I love this post. You know how to live.

    And I look forward to seeing the dress - someday.

  2. Good Girl! I am proud of you! :)

  3. I got to that point with a shirt that I was sure was going to take over pinterest... I just didn't enjoy it anymore, having it sitting out was preventing me from starting any projects that I really wanted to do, and it was overall, quite stressful. I'm so happy that I just decided to shelve it and maybe pick it up again someday, maybe leave it shelved forever.

  4. Well done. & there's far more satisfaction in making the right decision than there is in plowing on & not being happy. I envy your warm ice creamy days, it's the middle of winter here in oz & we're having a very cold, wet & windy one here in Melbourne.

  5. Hooray for summer! (and for enjoying it)
    You are awesome.

  6. I know the feeling. And you're right: we should live, not be lived by tasks. Enjoy your summer with the children!

  7. I'm glad that you are at peace with this dress for now. It will get done, but I'm with you about not going crazy to get it finished.

    I did get my dress finished (I really didn't have a choice on the matter). I used McCall's 6359-A ( and made it longer so that it's a knee-length sun dress. I'm an apple shape so 99.9% of dresses look horrible on me (or make me look pregnant) but with the darts and a little gather in the back it gives my figure a little help and looks as nice as any dress I've ever spent too much for in a store. I made it out of this beautiful green and white tropical-floralish cotton-lycra blend that I've been dying to use. I trimmed it with a box pleat on the bottom which, I think, echos the chest pleat. Not real complex, but I'm still so proud of it.

    I also whipped up a giant tote bag which will help out with the trip but I really need it for when I get back since my son will be starting swim lessons and it will be our beach bag.

    But I'm really excited for the wedding since my son and nephew will be the ring bearers and I sewed their outfits. They are just simple short, vest and a bow tie (that's what the bride wanted). The boys are as cute as can be to begin with, but they are going to be so darn cute in their little vest and bow-ties... I just hope we can actually get them to walk down the aisle since they are only 2 years old.

  8. But what WILL you wear?

    1. Something random, by the looks of it. I'm very tempted to wear jeans, actually. This is the upper midwest we're talking about, afterall. Plus, I've been told to expect to see folks there in anything from a formal gown to denim shorts!

    2. Could you whip up a skirt with the fabric and wear it with a nice store-bought top?

      I'm a fan of skirts and tops rather than dresses.

  9. Oh for epiphanies!!! Especially those that prevent frustration and enable one to enjoy very occasional weather.
    That lining fabric looks stunning, and if it were me, the expensive stuff would encourage me to pick this up again when the drafting muse re-emerges just so I could work with it. Right now I'm just working with some upholstery ticking to make overalls for the boy, and some thin floaty voile summer dresses, nothing really nice...

  10. My husband and I had a moment like that a few months back. We'd paid six bucks to mini golf at an indoor arcade type place. We paid the money before we realized that the golf course was outside in the back and had absolutely no shade. We walked out there and half heartedly hit the ball toward the first hole, kind of debating within ourselves. Then we both looked at the other and said, "we're grown ups, we don't have to do this if we don't want to!" We returned our clubs and had a very pleasant afternoon. Hope you're wedding is fantastic and hats off for not letting what you "should" do get in the way of what you want to do:)


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