Only about six weeks to go until the Jane Austen festival in Bath, and I've only got one dress done. Cripes, eh? Every time I make a start on an evening of sewing something goes a bit wrong (my thread gets all tangled in the machine, and I cannot fathom what I have done wrong) and it takes me much longer to finish bits than I would like. I've still got four dresses to make, with linings and handmade button holes, and lace and ribbon trimmings. I've also got to make a couple of hats, a spencer (jacket) and a couple of reticules (bags). I think that's all. I've just ordered boots and white tights. I've also got to try out some ways of doing my hair - it's a bit short so it'll be tricky to make it nice. I've left it a bit late really. But I am in the mood to sew, so perhaps in the next couple of weeks I'll make some headway! My mum has finished her six dresses - she's much faster than me, obviously. She's also sewn up two of my jackets, as well as finishing two hats of her own and a spencer and a couple of reticules. I wanted to do everything myself, but time was getting rather short!
I've only got one photo at the moment - this is of the Green Dress. You can't tell from this picture, but it's covered in a print of tiny green flowers and leaves. Can you see my trainer poking out at the bottom?! I didn't have the right shoes when we made this dress.
Actually, I think my mum sewed most of this one up. I haven't put sewn a skirt onto a bodice yet - that's what I'm going to try to do tonight. It's all a bit trial-and-error with me and sewing. I get there in the end, but I usually get the first attempt wrong and have to unpick the whole lot. I had to do that last night, when I sewed the lining into my Black Stripe - it was a mess, the material was pulled in all kinds of directions that it shouldn't be pulled in. But I learn from these mistakes, and I was able to put it right by myself :) I really enjoy it. It's very satisfying to take lengths of material and turn them into something you can wear. And I think I'm quite neat ... in the end. It's very time-consuming, but there's no need to rush, really - if you're willing and able to take your time over the process and not panic if things go wrong (which they will), it's a gorgeous thing to do. I am very eager to make more after the festival for next year.
Tonight I will be sewing up the Blue bodice and attaching its skirt, as well as attaching the skirt of the Black Stripe. I think I can do all of that in one night. Then I will have four dresses with skirts attached. The trickiest one is the Black Lace: that has a cream cotton lining, with black lace overlaid, so instead of just sewing together two pieces of fabric, I have to sew together four pieces each time. Fortunately, I do like tacking pieces into place before sewing them on the machine, and this is what I will need to do in this case.
I'd love to get on and sew right now, but the boys get too curious and want to have a go - of course, they can have a go on the machine, but that doesn't get my dresses done!
Next time I blog about the dresses I'd like to have some finished ones to show you :) So many things to do - I do so dearly wish I didn't need sleep.