Monday, January 7, 2013

Back in the sewing room: new year, old projects.

I'm back home after my trip, and while I looooooooovvvvveeee vacation, I love coming home, too. And, yipee! Now that the holidays are over, I have lovely me time again. Yay!

I've been itching to start a new project, but in the spirit of the new year and resolutions and all that, I have decided to challenge myself: I'm going to try really hard not to buy new fabric (I have soooooo much at home) and I'm going to try to finish up some of those pesky UFO's that are cluttering up my sewing room. 

Oh, and mending. I hate mending and altering, but those are piling up, too...

So, pat on the back today. I started by finally repaired the wool braid on the bottom of my brown wool dress. Then I gave some thought to the next challenge in the Sew Fortnightly challenge, since now that I'm back, I can participate. Fun!

1913? 1813? 1713?... I batted around some ideas and settled on 1813. I was just starting to trace out a new pattern when I came across the Patterson gown pieces, tucked away, half embroidered, half cut out. Half way there! Yay!

I managed to stitch up most of the bodice this afternoon, taking a break half way through gathering up the front bust. I pinned it all on the mannequin for a look. So far I'm pretty pleased. I'll probably sew up the dress and then go back and finish the skirt embroidery. That will take a minute or two...

Detail of embroidery on the Patterson dress.
Metropolitan Museum, 1983.6.1

It's not strictly 1813. It's actually almost ten years earlier, but the fortnight challenge was the incentive I needed to get it out of the pile. Maybe it was given to a poorer relation or maid and lived on after it's more fashionable owner discarded it.... Haha excuses...


  1. How amazing that you have the skills to embroider that design! Wow! It is stunning already, and I'm sure will only gain in stunning-ness as you complete more embroidery.

    Happy New Year!

  2. Beautiful work! The embroidery is exquisite, great work for the challenge.

  3. That is so pretty! I'm also impressed that you embroidered it, and especially that it wouldn't take you forever. ;)

  4. Thanks, ladies! Actually the embroidery has taken quite a while. Lots of netflix on the couch while doing it. But in all honesty, look at the original up close. It's not fine embroidery at all. I used sized 8 cotton pearl. It's not fine whitework like dresden or anything so it's very accomplishable... Is that even a word??

  5. It looks beautiful! I like the 3D effect you get with a thicker thread.

    1. Thank you! I always thought it was neat that the embroidery wasn't very fine. Not too intimidating! Something fun to work on.

      Have a nice weekend!