Thursday, October 21

dress stress

We've been invited to a fancy wedding come December. A fancy wedding at the Biltmore Estate. Luke will be a groomsman and there will be tuxedos involved. I anticipate a lot of southern style and class. And I quite literally have not a thing to wear.

So I went shopping (online and in-store) and I have to say that the selection was "meh" at best. I do not have a body shape that is easily flattered by dresses. In the past I've tended toward skirts because I like how they lay at my waist, and how I can choose various blouses to get whatever look I so desire. But this time I really want a dress: my very first "little black dress". And when my shopping endeavors proved futile I had an epiphany: "I can MAKE a dress. I can MAKE a dress exactly how I want it!".

This is how I want it:

Those cap sleeves! That darted bodice! That pleated skirt! That waistline! That collar line! I want that! And I found a pattern that nearly perfectly fits my standards (I'm referring to the green one on the left):

This week I spent two nights constructing my dress from the pattern and using the size that best matched my measurements. This dress has it all: a) 12 pleats b) 6 darts c) a zipper d) a hook and eye e) interfacing f) stay stitches g) pockets! If you don't know (m)any of those terms, have no fear. I barely did as of Monday. But through the beauty of a pattern, phone calls to my mom, emails to a blogging hero and approximately 1,000 google searches I basically completed the dress, save for the hem.

HOORAY! Except...It's Too Big!

Now, I'm not REALLY complaining. Every girl likes to put on a piece of clothing she's afraid might be too tight, and then is pleased to see it draping from her shoulders and sagging at the waist. But now in addition to darts and pleats and stay stitches, it looks like I'm going to have to self-teach myself how to do alterations.

In fact, yesterday I googled "clothing alterations" and one site merely suggested purchasing a 3-way mirror and a custom-made body form with my proportions. I promptly banged my head on the table. Clicked out of Google. Called Alyson. And asked her if she would like to learn how to pin a person for dress alterations. (She does!!)

After a brief fitting with my new seamstress pal I'm pretty convinced I need to remove the zipper, the sleeves and the collar and readjust the fit. Meet my new best friend, the seam ripper:

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