Soho Mood

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADress: Sohomode

Shoes: Shoebuy

Happy Sunday, everyone! I hope you all enjoyed your weekends as much as I did.

It was only a short week for me (Cup Day public holiday, hurrah!) but I was wholeheartedly exhausted by Friday night. We’re still in the midst of wishy-washy weather: in the 30’s on Friday, then a blowy change on Saturday and a sunny but chill 20-something today. I don’t mind it too much and in a few months I’ll be longing for those cool changes (though my beautiful little apartment has air-conditioning, so I predict this summer will be considerably less unpleasant than the last couple).

Can you believe it’s already November? The hot weather’s not far off now. I have a slew of sunny summer dresses that I’m itching to wear; this new Sohomode tea-dress is one of them and I’ve been sitting on it for months now waiting for it to get warm enough. I fell completely in love with the poppy fabric when I first saw it on Louise’s Instagram. Knowing my obsession with all thing yellow Louise made it up with mustard piping on the belt:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

And then (just because she’s amazing) she also created a thin rustic braided belt to swap it out with:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’m thinking this might be my Christmas frock for 2014!

If you fancied treating yourself for the upcoming holiday season (and why wouldn’t you?) Louise is running a special discount for Frocks and Frou Frou readers until Thursday – 15% off her store with the code “Lovefromsohomode”.

She’s updated her extensive fabric archive with some absolute stunners… which I perused very carefully. Purely for research purposes, you understand. Not because I’m thinking of adding a sixth tea-dress to my collection.

… If I WERE going to add to my collection I’d probably have to go the clouds

3df4d7c55c2cd054ade04259c9ad1fe5_1024x1024

Or maybe the trippy strawberries:

ff_psy_strawberry_1024x1024

Or my little squirrel buddy from my Sohomode shift dress might like to do another cameo…

fabric_days_of_old_1024x1024

yes….. purely research purposes…

Do you see a fabric in Louise’s collection that speaks to you?

Less Is Myrtle

Frocks and Frou Frou - Myrtle DressFrocks and Frou Frou - Myrtle DressFrocks and Frou Frou - Myrtle Dress Frocks and Frou Frou - Myrtle Dress

 Dress: DIY from Colette “Myrtle” pattern

Belt: Dangerfield

Shoes: Comfortview

I’m not a natural sewer; I’m too impatient and haphazard, and I don’t really possess the skills to do things like full-bust alterations. I’m definitely not a measure-twice-cut-once kind of gal (more like a who-the-hell-measures-these-days kind). Despite my success with the Macaron dress pattern years previously I got a little burned with the last Colette dress that I attempted to make: the Peony had to be dramatically (and amateurishly) tweaked to be wearable, and even then I wasn’t that happy with the results.

Colette launched the Myrtle dress pattern in July this year with some gorgeous shots of a curvy young woman in a draped white dress. With its cowl-neck, blouson bodice and elasticised waist it looked like a dress with a forgiving fit for beginning sewers, so I thought I’d buy some cheap jersey from Spotlight and give the pattern a whirl.

Colette’s patterns are great for newbie dressmakers. The patterns come packaged with a booklet with very clear and concise illustrated instructions. The Colette website/blog provides heaps of basic tutorials, and there’s even a step-by-step sew along that culminates in a great gallery of dresses made by the participants.

I picked a cheapie printed cotton jersey from Spotlight in a lovely burnt orange. The dress seems to take an inordinate amount of fabric (that cowl neck bodice is self-faced, so there’s a bit of extra fabric in that) so I ended up spending a little bit more than I’d anticipated, but the result’s a killer.

The elasticised waist is easy and comfortable, and the fact I’m short-waisted wasn’t an issue due to the blousy effect of the bodice. The draped neckline flatters my figure by showing off collar bones without flashing my cleavage up and down the street. And (hurrah!) the dress even has pockets.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It took me a couple of hours from fabric to frock, and that includes time acquainting myself with my new sewing machine, and unpicking and resewing the bodice to he skirt three times (I keeps sewing it on inside out. Don’t ask me how… it was late.)

I was so delighted with the finished result that the first thing I did was go out and buy MORE jersey fabric so I could make a second version, slightly longer than the first.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

This second Myrtle was made of a much softer knit fabric, so the drape on the neckline is deeper and more pronounced. The longer hemline gives it an elegance that makes it perfect for a special event, so I played up the glam factor with a sparkly brooch pinned at the waistband and my best bling from Totally Jewel.

Frocks and Frou Frou

Necklace & Earrings from Totally Jewel

All up – fabric, elastic and thread – the dress cost me about $14 which is a steal in anyone’s book, and now that I’m confident with the pattern I’m already planning to make a third Myrtlw with a special (i.e. spendy) fabric that I’ve ordered from Spoonflower.