Monday, 9 May 2011

Off piste.

I promise both myself and my house look less moody than this in real life...
One of the - admittedly extremely few - drawbacks to my newfound and still quite baffling mild success at making stuff and selling it is the fact that I can't keep any of it myself. I'd love a skull handbag, or a Viewmaster Cushion, but if I just hoard everything I will a) never get any money for it and be back at square one and b) have a house even more full of mismatched cushions and handbags I don't really need. Not that there's anything wrong with having loads of handbags. Really. In fact, everyone should have at least a dozen handbags. And they should buy them all from me. Ahem.

Sometimes though, I come across something that's just so god-damned amazeballs that to see it go to someone else would just make me weep. Such as the truly epic Robert Kaufman horror movie material I bought last week. Normally I tend to buy fat quarters and half metres of fabric, but this time I new it would be so cool I had to buy a full metre (I know, easy tiger). And then when it arrived, I couldn't bear the idea of chopping it up and selling it on.

So. A metre of fabric, covered in awesome Hammer horror monsters. Frankly, I was happy just to wrap it around myself like a blanket and sleep under it, but I knew that it needed to be seen by the wide world. So I decided to make a dress.

I've only ever made one dress before, and that was a fiendishly complicated 1950's job, which turned out OK (against all odds), but was entirely pattern based. This time I decided to fly solo.

How hard can it be?

Well, not very, it appears. Even I managed it. I folded it in half, sewed it together up the side, and put a length of elastic at the top to hold it up. So far, so good. Then for a waist, another length of elastic, this time sewn straight onto the back of the fabric with a zigzag stitch. I have no idea if this is how you are meant to do it, but it seemed to work. A hem at the bottom (courtesy of my eternally patient Significant Otter who pinned it up while I stood on a chair and made picky comments), and ta da! A tube dress is born!

I love these so much they have their own shelf. One day I may get them a spotlight.

It needed a belt to hide the fact that it is, basically, a sack, but I'm still pretty chuffed. I added a couple of straps to make a tie-up halterneck just in case the elastic were to give way under the enormous weight of my heaving bosoms (yeah, whatever). 

And the best thing? For the first time ever, I have an entirely co-ordinated skirt and shoe ensemble. I know! I'm a proper grown up!


  1. Dress looks amazing, nice job! Love that fabric.
    And, and, and, I HAVE THOSE SHOES TOO! :)

  2. 1. You look like a zombie. Coooooooooooool.
    2. You look like you need to eat more cake (jewish mother bit coming out in me)
    3. You look hot to trot in your new sack dress with elastic and a belt. Suitably impressed.

  3. Flo - All the best people have those shoes, science fact.

    Vera - I honestly don't actually look that skinny, or that zombified. I really don't know what happened with that photo. Silly Chaz and his silly new phone. But it's the only one I've got until someone puts up drunken and embarrassing ones from the subsequent party, which will be a lot more true to life, I'm sure.

  4. Wowee, you should sell these, you really should! That style looks so '80s Retro and I'm sure they'd do well. How clever to just make a dress, with no pattern, but have it come out so awesome!
    I'm glad I came to look at your blog now!

  5. Thank you - the problem is it was so thrown together that I'm not sure how I could go about doing them to fit other people! I only knew where to put the waist because I could measure it on myself, for example, and had to keep trying it on to make sure it looked ok. I shall have to see if I can use this as a prototype to make a 'new improved' version that might be more appropriate for public consumption :)