Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The muumuu that ate Manhattan

So it's been several years since I've tried to sew any serious clothing for myself. I think I define "serious" in my head as "involving zippers and/or facings/linings". There have been improvised lounge pants and night chemises here and there, along with a couple Simplicity 3835 tops, but there has not been any serious sewing since that terrible Hawaiian print dress that I made in one night before beach week at Myrtle Beach senior year of college.

But with the hot weather coming up, and given the fact that I would gladly wear a simple little dress each and every humid day of the summer given the choice, I decided to break out the fusible interfacing and give it another go. This is my muslin of McCall's 5620, made from some just barely acceptable medium-weight apparel cotton from the sale bin at Hancock's. (I'm not a huge fan of flutter-bys...) But there's a reason I'm not letting you see all of it. I made my regular (read: shockingly large-- really, the pattern industry and the wedding gown people...) pattern size. However... this won't really be a "wearable muslin", as it turned out ginormous. As in, "Honey, does the Volvo need a cover against the elements?"-huge. Sure, I noticed that there was a ton of ease listed on the pattern envelope, but I guess I thought that the pleats would make up for that and make it hang okay. Wrong-o.

Maybe with some heavier fabric it would hang a little closer to the body or something, but as it is, I've made myself a fancy swimsuit cover-up with pretty purple facings. Sigh. If I ever get a bee in my bonnet to make this again, it'll be at least one, maybe two sizes smaller. I mean, even the arm hole openings are huge on this thing. And my seam allowances are near-perfect, I promise...

7 comments:

Anina said...

You're so funny! This is why I gave up on making clothes. It's not like you can return it if you don't like it. :-)

kate said...

I loathe sewing for myself for exactly this reason! I can only suggest that you carefully measure your body/the actual pattern pieces/a garment you already own, and then determine what size to make from those numbers.

Sewing for my toddler is much easier and more fun!

Louise said...

Thanks for the support, you two (and the advice, Kate!). I'm actually attempting another dress as we speak, and I hope this one will come out a little better.

amandajean said...

that is exactly why I am scared to make clothes. but I am going to try the simplicity pattern 3835....with a back up plan of using the bleached muslin for quilt pieces if it goes terribly wrong. it's good to have a backup plan. :)

Louise said...

AJ-- Back-up plans are good. I think you'll find Simplicity 3835 a lot of fun!

Green Kitchen said...

Maybe you have a larger-than-B-cup? If so, you need to measure above the bust to get a more accurate size, so it will fit in the arm holes and shoulders. The next step (which I've never actually done, but want to) is to make a full bust adjustment. I'm guessing with all the extra ease you wouldn't have to do a FBA with this pattern. I think it looks cool.

Louise said...

Michelle, you're absolutely right about the above the bust measurement. I've made this again in a size smaller and it's still huge, so I may have to learn about the dreaded fba (but not for this garment!). I have been wearing this despite the fact that it makes me look about 8 months pregnant. There's one thing you can say for it, though, it's comfortable! Thanks for the tips.