The finished Lady Skater dress
My husband is very, very relieved this dress turned out. You see, on Saturday morning I was on my second attempt of ripping out one hot mess of a neckband on this while managing to put a hole in the fabric where there shouldn’t have been one. (And YES, I was using the seam ripper in a way that someone who cared about their fabric wouldn’t have been using it.) And because this dress wasn’t coming together the way I’d hoped, I decided that my whole life was ruined, that the house needed a top-to-bottom enema, that I was a lazy slug who wasn’t getting enough exercise, that I needed to completely rethink my life, and that I was definitely, DEFINITELY finished with sewing. For GOOD. Never, EVER going to sew again. You know the drill. Smart man that my husband is (or perhaps it’s just a strong self-preservation instinct), once my tirade was over he silently and slowly backed out of the room and disappeared up to his office/guitar room to hide out for a while.
After getting out of the house for a bit, I decided to have another go at this damn dress, and…a miracle happened. Everything just…worked. The neckband? Nary a wrinkle or hole or crooked topstitch to be found. So I kept going. And, a couple of hours later and ten minutes before we were due at our neighbours’ house for a barbeque, I had a really cute dress! So I hadn’t had time to finish the hem — I decided to wear it out anyway. The neighbours said what a great dress, and I said THANK YOU I JUST FUCKING SEWED IT! Ok, I didn’t say that, but that was the level of exuberance and relief and catharsis with which I accepted their compliments.
Who me, freak out over a neckband? Never.
This is the Lady Skater Dress from Kitschykoo, available as a downloadable PDF for GPB 6.50 (I dunno how to get a pound symbol sign out of this keyboard so I’m not even gonna try.) Look how friggin cute it is. Impossible to believe that only hours before, this innocent-looking woman in an electric-blue dress was a complete Godzilla. (I was toying with Sewzilla, but that’s a bit of a stretch, no?)
That moment when you realize you have VPLs
I think this took me about 8 hours all in to finish, not including the excruciating day I waited to hear back from the designer to confirm whether or not seam allowances were included in the pattern pieces. In the end I asked Lauren of Lladybird, whose super-cute tiger print version of the dress was what inspired me to buy this pattern, and she confirmed that the seam allowances are, in fact, included. Which meant I could trim away the 3/8″ seam allowances I had added to all the pieces, including that damn hole I had accidentally put in the bodice piece by the neckband. So happy ending.
But even though this took ME a long time, don’t think it’s not an easy pattern. Amanda from Kitschykoo has put together a fantastic pattern that’s very easy to adjust for size and the directions are very detailed and include links to tips & tutorials for beginners. There are only 6 pieces to deal with (ok, 9, if you count the neck & armbands) so in theory it can come together in no time at all. For me, it was the inherent pitfalls of working with a lightweight jersey, and not being careful enough with pinning and sewing. On another day, I could just have well have nailed this in 3 hours.
This is an amazingly comfortable dress and for such a simple design I do kinda feel like a million bucks in it. The bright blue is really eye catching. I’m thinking this would look great with a jersey wrap belt in red or yellow … perhaps I’ll make one of each. And I’m already thinking of making a second dress in yellow, despite all my challenges on this one. I’m assuming, though, that my husband would rather I just didn’t sew anything for a while. 😉
Obligatory cat picture.