I bought this Liberty of London fabric what feels like AGES ago on Massdrop, an awesome site where they try to get a bunch of people to sign up to buy something so everyone can get it at wholesale prices, or at least a nice discount. I’ve been hearing about Liberty of London forever, everyone touts at how amazing it is, but the prices are crazy. I’m honestly not the biggest fan of the tiny florals they are mostly famous for, but when I saw these tiny teapots and teacups I was like DONE! SOLD! I just had to get my hands on this fabric to see what all the fuss was about. I bought two yards.
Problem is, and I know I’m not the only one here, once you have something that is more expensive or more special than usual, it is REALLY DIFFICULT to imagine cutting it up. I’ve been tormenting myself, trying to figure out the perfect pattern to make with it. But lately I’ve been trying to rearrange my thinking and convince myself that obviously, once this fabric is sewn into a garment, it will be much more fabulous than folded on my shelf, squeezed between all the other stuff I have! So I decided to just GO FOR IT :D
I have been sitting on this Deer and Doe Sureau dress for a little while, kind of unsure about the style… is it me? Is it too “Little House on the Prairie”? Those tiny teapots that look like they could be florals from a distance made me think that if I paired this pattern with them, it just might work perfectly :) It is still prairie-ish, but also a little surprising and different when you look up close.
Even still, I wanted to make sure I had this pattern fitted to my body perfectly, since, you know, Liberty. I want to actually WEAR this thing. So I made an FBA a couple different ways and made a couple muslins. I asked for help on Instagram, where there was a resounding unanimous vote on the one version, so I decided I was just going to DO IT. Time to carve this dress out of the fabric!
Another issue: the paper pattern I have is in French. I was feeling mighty daring and decided to just wing it and do what I thought I was supposed to do, lol! So I really didn’t follow the directions at all, just used pictures as a slight recommendation..
I did a couple things differently- since it was sort of ploofy in the sleeves, I decided to have fun with that aspect and put a little elastic in the hem of the sleeve. It is just a tiny effect, but I like it.. The most exciting thing I did though, was I put pockets in a dress with an invisible zipper in the side seam!!! This whole zipper thing excites me more than it should, to be honest, lol! It was my very first side seam zipper, and it came out FANTASTIC. The top lines up PERFECTLY with the armpit, and the friggen pocket, man… I can’t even describe my giddiness. I really prefer my dresses to have pockets and I really wanted to figure out how to do it, and I DID. The whole time I sewed this dress, between the french instructions and pocket situation, the song “I Did it MYYY WAAYYY” by Frank Sinatra was blaring through my head.
I will do a tutorial on how I did that pocket on the zipper seam, there is an experiment I want to do on a dress next and I’m going to try to document it there. I just need a little palate cleanser after sewing this dress… It took me way too long to sew what should have been a simple dress and I got sort of over it at the end…
The dress length was perfect unhemmed (I added 1.5 inches before I cut) and I wanted to keep as much length as possible, so I eked out enough scraps to make some binding and hem the skirt that way, I ended up only losing 3/8 of an inch *whew*. I hand sewed that bad boy on, too.. which took way too long since neither Millie nor Quinn was into me sewing in the living room. They wanted all the attention. Harumph! Also, it took me longer than I imagined to decide on the buttons, and then after I made that decision it took me a couple days to actually do it, ha! Nice simple brown ones :) I really like the look. I feel like if they were light colored, they would have blended in with the print..
SO, what do I think of Liberty now that I’ve sewn it? Honestly, it is pretty nice stuff. it is super thin, yet super strong and holds a press really well… But I don’t know if I’ll splurge on it ever again. I took the creation of this dress a little more seriously than I usually do, which was kind of stressful. I love the joy I get out of sewing, but this project was full of worry, “What if I cut something wrong? What if it fits funny? What if I hate it?” I’ll most likely wear the dickens out of this dress (in the fall, it is still WAY TOO HOT to wear sleeves here!) and I’ll enjoy having this fabric touch my skin, but I am SO GLAD that I am done sewing it and I don’t have to stress anymore!