I’m so in love with Deer & Doe– definitely a Fangirl! The packaging and overall design are so beautiful- plus fabulous patterns and wonderful instructions in both French and English. I wasn’t originally planning on entering the Indie FanGirl Competition over at The Monthly Stitch. I just wasn’t feeling inspired and couldn’t justify the expense of more patterns when I already own so many. I looked at a ton of companies but couldn’t make up my mind. Luckily my Deer and Doe Centauree dress was completed last week. I just had to figure out if I could make a dress work with another piece since I was out of time to order another pattern. I looked over the website and the only pattern available for download was the free Plantain Tee. I couldn’t see that working immediately, until I saw another version made into a cardigan over on the blog addicts page-brainstorm! I also was low on what fabric I had that would work with my madder dyed dress. I found a knit dress in my closet that has never been worn since It was just way too tight- it’s gotta be a size 2 if that. I must have been seriously delusional about how much baby weight I was going to lose when I bought it 3 years ago :) But I had just enough material with some creative cutting to make the top. While it doesn’t look much like the original the plantain is a fantastic base pattern which I know I’ll be using again!
- 2 yards of colorgrown 58″ Island Maze Organic Natural Cotton from Organic Cottons Plus
- Madder Dye from Botanical Colors
- 16″ invisible pink zipper
- pink/peach cotton thread
- self made bias tape(below) from the dress material
- refashioned knit acrylic and nylon maxi dress (way too small!)
- coordinating thread
I had made up the dress bodice of the Centauree (translates as Knapweed which doesn’t have quite the same ring so I’m sticking to the French Version!) at the beginning of the month to test the fit for my swimsuit version, my Centauree-Ava, then took a break and came back to making the dress last week. Originally I was planning to go for the full high-low hem even though I know my husband hates them-risky since this is meant for more of a date night dress since there is no easy breastfeeding access. I sewed this up in my size, a 40. The fit was spot on in the bust but afterwards I had to take in a good 2-3″ inches in the sides to get the fit right, so I will probably go down a size next time. I followed along on the blog for the sew-along which was so helpful. The only trouble I had was with the invisible zipper, but I broke out my sewing tome and followed the instructions and now it’s a breeze to do! I love this bodice shape and the straps are so cool. I played around with the placement but ended up keeping them pretty simple. After I was done I just found the high- low too dramatic, it touched the floor in the back, especially in the cotton. In a silk or sheer I think it would be amazing. So I shortened the hem but still kept it a bit longer in back with that nice curved sweep.
The fabric itself was shibori dyed in my last batch of madder. I posted more images to my facebook page if you want to take a look. It was the end of the color in the dyepot- I had dyed some other pieces first so the color on this fabric was much lighter, pink instead of red. I did a triangle fold pattern and worked a lot on placement when I was cutting out my fabric to make the most of the pattern. I think the dye really helps to make this dress special!
Now onto my Plantain cardigan/Tshirt. I had to use some very creative cutting to make this top. My dress was quite tiny on top and though a maxi dress only had enough fabric for the short sleeve tee. I had enough for that as is but I played with the lines in the knit to create an angled bottom. I cut the bottom of the skirt into the front and back bodice and used the top for my sleeves. I cut out the original sleeves and used a section of them for the new sleeves, as a band on the bottom to make it 3/4 length which I prefer. I cut the front shirt down the middle and added facings which were stitched down, which gives it a bit of weight. I was originally going to add buttons but it seemed pointless since I really won’t be buttoning this. I also did a folded edge for my neckline much like I do with my lady skater. Just a strip folded in half and attached with the serger to the neckline and then stitched down with a double needle. I love the shape of this and the slight flare against the angled stripes. I really wasn’t sure this top was going to cut it but I really love the shape. This top is really practical here in Florida where it’s so hot out right now but freezing from excessive air-conditioning indoors.
All in all I love my Fangirl look! Check back next week when voting opens and please give my outfits your vote! I still can’t believe I completed a look for each weeks challenge. My original goal was just entering one :) I’m surprised how much sewing I’ve accomplished this summer already, especially with both kids home all day! Right now I’m working on a knit navy stripe dress with Marcy Tilton’s shingle dress for the 4th of July and I just dyed some more fabric with a really cool seashell wrapping technique :) Happy Summer!