Saturday, April 27, 2013

Who's Afraid of the Big, Bold Print?: Another Colette Laurel

Who's afraid of a big, bold print?  I am.  I wanted to sew up a Laurel without sleeves for summer.  I chose a new Amy Butler print in sateen and paired it with a quilting cotton polka dot for the binding and pockets.  As usual, I was very excited when the package arrived in the mail.  Then I opened it up and realized the print was very big, which meant I would have to do pattern matching. A new experience for me!  I wish I would have chosen to place the front on the fold so that the big circles were running down the center instead of two on the sides.  I don't dislike it so much that I won't wear it, though. 

My main concern was getting the pattern on the front piece to match up with the pattern on the back pieces.  I forgot to take into account the bust darts, so the line up was thrown off.  I was so focused on getting the front and back prints to match up that it didn't occur to me to be concerned with where I was placing the back pieces.  I would move them to a different location on the fabric if I had it to do over again because the print is off center.  Also, the invisible zipper used up 5/8 inch on each side of the fabric, so the print doesn't meet up in the center.  I don't know how to fix that so I'll have to read up on it.  Invisible zipper:

This was my first foray into pattern matching.  Now I know what to look out for in the future. 

I knew that I wanted to use the polka dot fabric for the pocket flap.  When I put the main fabric pockets on the front of the dress, I realized you weren't even going to know they were there because the print is so busy.  Then it was going to look like I sewed two flaps on my dress for no reason.  I cut out two polka dot pockets but didn't like the way it looked, so I decided to sew polka dot bias tape around the pocket edge as well.  I should have lined up the polka dots on the bias tape in a straight line.  I didn't notice they were off until I had already sewn the pockets onto the dress, and I was running out of polka dot fabric for the armhole and neckline binding.  However, I love my little pockets.  And again, I'll know better next time.

I also love the way the polka dots look against the bold main fabric. I love a polka dot. I tried sewing the binding on completely by machine but decided I didn't like it as much as slipstitching the back.  I ripped it off and did it the way I like it.  It takes longer but I like it better. 

Techniques I practiced:
1. Pattern matching (ouch)
2. Patch pockets
3. Binding tape.  I have struggled in the past sewing binding tape together but, as usual, the instructions on the Laurel E-Book helped me out.
4. Invisible zippers
5. Blind hemming.  Takes me forever!
6. Slipstiching

What to work on in the future:
1. Pattern matching!
2. General attention to detail (like making sure the polka dots were lined up).

Overall I'm happy!

1 comment:

  1. I really like your dress - the fabric is gorgeous and the binding contrast works really well. And I think you did a great job with the pattern matching - especially on the pockets