Saturday, July 19, 2008

formalwear for sorority rush

I needed to work on something that wasn't going to send me over the edge or make me feel any more bad about myself - the pants are threatening to do both.

Besides dsd#1 breezed through for a quick 36 hour stay, and I wanted to get at least one test garment done before cutting into the blue silk that is due here next Friday for the dress for the wedding.
Turns out, she's also in need of 3 more dresses for Sorority Rush functions next month. She managed to carve out an additional 36 hours on top of the original, and I've barely left the sewing room since she arrived Wed evening. ....not true, we had a girls night with the three of us hijacking the TV from dh and watching Project Runway.

We spent a bit of time pulling out stash fabrics and me just giving up and saying ok to whatever she wants to use.
She needs a Black and Cream formal (short dress) for Rush, a Bright or Colored formal (short), as well as several more casual looks.

The above will work as one of the required "bright/colored" dresses.
Remember the muslin I made to come up with a design that worked for the Blue silk dupioni?
I wanted to test out the bodice in silk. Katie chose a piece of cream silk shantung I had, and a remnant of a red print crepe de chine. In order to make it a different dress than the blue silk will be she decided to go "halter" on the top, and selected a straight skirt. The print placement on the skirt was determined solely by how much fabric I had. I know that the match of the pattern on the back could have been better, but, I didn't have any more fabric.
Good thing I was able to do this while she was here. Even though the bodice was all draped in muslin, the silk underlined with organza drapes differently and changes needed to be made. Anyway, you can see that it's pinned to an acceptable fit, and I just need to translate that to a pattern for the blue, before I stitch it all together.

I'm going to construct the lining with some boning in the back to eliminate that falling down, scrunchy look, and peg the skirt a bit before hemming. She's promised me finished pics after I get them mailed to her. I'll post the finished pics then.

oh, and re the pattern for the blue silk: I also started over completely, ditching the paper pattern step, and draped the skirt for the blue right on her. It's less bulky in the front and prettier. I threw the other pattern/muslin for that skirt away already.

Next up:

I also draped a muslin for the "Cream and Black" dress she needs, then cut it out of the same silk shantung, mounted it on silk organza and got it basted together for first fitting. Unfortunately, I didn't get any pics of it on her. The skirt will be overlaid with a piece of black lace.

Katie is almost 22 and going through that change from young girl dresses to a bit more sophisticated older looking dresses, and it's a bit of a learning curve for both of us. She's really loving the diagonal lines right now, as they help to give the illusion of more of a nipped in waist than she has naturally. She's also never purchased or worn dresses that are this fitted, with straight skirts, as she doesn't fit one off the rack.
I give her a lot of credit that she is at least willing to listen to me and try some things, and I give myself a pat in that I'm breathing deep and just doing some of what she's asking for. The compromise seems to be yielding dresses that are pretty, and youthful, and sexy without going over the edge to slutty, and we're both happy.
I also got a muslin made up for this OOP Vogue pattern - very 40's glam, and she's tagged a great piece of black/cream chiffon that I had in stash.

I need to get these mailed by the end of July, as she needs them for Rush at the end of the first week in August.
Oh, and I have to finish up another game-day dress in red/black and white.


Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

Okay, I am scared of you! :) We would still be struggling with paper patterns at my house and I would need a lot more lead time! Can you at least take pictures of the finished garments before you send them off? I would love to see on hanger and on body shots!

AllisonC said...

Some lovely pieces here - I'm particularly excited to see how the lace overlay dress turns out, the lace is really gorgeous.

Mardel said...

Oh it all sounds like so much fun. I always wanted to do stuff like that with my DSD! Of course she would never do Sorority anything and her idea of getting dressed up is pulling on black slinky pants and a non-logo tee. Oh well.


Mardel said...
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cidell said...

Geesh. What do I have to do to get you for a stepmother? I'm jealous, wah!

Dana said...

Uh, Marji, do you ever leave your sewing area? I mean, except for Project Runway? Everything is beautiful!

Vicki said...

You have so many beautiful fabrics in your stash!!! Lucky daughters that get to shop there :)

Claudine said...

Does she know how lucky she is to have you? You are the best stepmom ever!

Sigrid said...

That's a lot to make in so little time, and they are more complicated than a simple tee or straight skirt. Amazing you can do all that and finish it without your dsd around to try. Lucky sd.

Alexandra said...

Wow! You must have an incredible reserve of patience and energy.

designdreamer said...

I'm loving that black lace and cream combo. Lucky girl! Fortnately, all 3 of my girls are girly girls, but there are times, that it can be a little over the top too!
Don't even ask about oldest dd's proms!!! (rolls eyes)

Carol said...

Lovely fabrics. I'm jealous, too.

LauraLo said...

Wow, she's going to have some really beautiful outfits! I'm anxious to see all of them. And oh, that Vogue pattern... stunning!

Tany said...

You do keep busy!!! Making all those wonderful outfits sounds fun and rewarding! I can't wait to see them, your fabric/pattern selection is exquisite!

Brigitte said...

Oh Marji, you always amaze me! And I think DHD made some excellent fabric choices.

There is NOTHING like 40's glam.

Rose said...

The fabrics and Vogue pattern are eye candy. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished garments.

Mary, Mary... said...

Dang, you're busier than a one-armed paper hanger with those dresses! If you ever find the magic formula for pants, let me know. I'm all skirts, all the time when I sew. Pssst..I used to work in a needlepoint/yarn shop and I have a canvas stash, complete with an xmas stocking. I should just frame them at this rate. Good luck!