Wednesday, August 22, 2012


I've mentioned how I like to look for yarn at V & S Stedman's when I go to my parents, and I'm regretting not trusting my instincts last time I was there.   There were the 1lb Mill End bags, and several were full of a slightly fuzzy cream coloured yarn.  I thought it might be Patons Lace, since I had bought that there before, and there was one mixed bag that had a ball of the beautiful brown/roses along with other yarn (and since I didn't want the other yarn, that would have made the one ball the same price as at Michaels--$7.99).  I'm not familiar with the solid colours of Patons Lace, but yesterday I was at Michaels and they finally have it, and indeed, they have a cream colour.  And, of course, my parents aren't at home this week to nip in and grab me a bag or two :(

Also at Stedman's are clothes.  I don't usually look too much, since the change room seems to be an after thought in the store, and I usually have hooligans with me.  But one time last summer I did look through a sales rack and found a maxi dress that I loved.  It was very lightweight, and even lined.  The top was beautifully smocked, with adjustable straps.  It was a bit too long, and sized 3X.  For the most part, it did fit, for some reason, though the elastic along the top of the bodice did not lay on my skin.  I figured I could easily take it in and shorten it.

 Of course, the weather turned chilly right after I bought it, LOL.  After I had worn it for a day, I noticed why it had been marked down.  On the back, one of the turquoise embroidery threads had come undone.  If I just cut off the lower bodice, it would have fallen across my chest at a really strange spot. 

I liked the smocking, and thought it might make a good bodice piece.  I carefully cut it off just below the band that was partially missing, so that bit would be in the seam allowance and give the maximum amount available for the midriff.  I shortened the top portion of the skirt, to save the lovely border print.  I re-seamed it to the smocked midriff.
 But what to do about the bodice?  At first, I envisioned a gathered top.  This would add a bit of opaqueness to the thin fabric.  However, it just did not look right.  Bulky and weird.  It was also too tall.  I kept cutting and seaming until it seamed right.  Originally I wanted it as high as possible so that when I put the straps on they would cover my bra straps, but when I tried it out, that also looked weird.  I did find a strapless tube style bra though.  I am undecided about sewing the straps back on...I could then put the straps on that came with the strapless bra, making it more secure, LOL.  But I've also never had a strapless dress, so this is fun!  I do wish I had planned a bit more and made a full bodice, especially after seeing the pictures.

I think the midriff might actually be too high, as you can see it doesn't sit right at my waist and it makes me look like I have a roll.  Well, I am soft in the middle, LOL, but I didn't think I looked like this.
 Perhaps there's too many horizontal lines?  I kept pulling the midriff down trying to smooth it out, but maybe it just needs to be narrower.
I wore it to a boat festival, and it was quite nice and cool, though the smocking as usual, made my back sweat.  I wish I had a picture of the embroidery that was done over the smocking.  It add a really nice touch, something that I wouldn't do if I was making it myself!

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