Oh I have been so lucky. I was fortunate enough to be selected as one of Tasia’s testers for the new Sewaholic Cambie Dress. I became mega excited when I received details & designs. You may have already seen there are two versions: a full skirted version with inseam pockets and an A line version with hip pockets. Both dresses are fully lined & both have the cutest sweetheart neckline with gathered cap sleeves.
What struck me was that I would wear both versions. The A line skirted dress I felt could be a smarter office dress whilst the full skirted version evoked vintage 50s frocks fit for a frolic. I knew I was in trouble for the testing. I wanted to make both. Surely I could make both to Tasia’s deadline? Maybe?
At my next available lunch break by the twelfth strike of the Abbey clock my desk chair was spinning on its pedestal as I raced across to the fabric shop in town. I knew what I wanted, I had Tasia’s list of recommended fabrics, but could I find something “just right”? Sadly not. I wanted a patterned fabric, but not anything too modern, or too typically “2012 wedding”, or too expensive. I ended up just buying some expensive lawn as lining a bit out of guilt after asking for them for the fabrics on my shopping list, *bothering* them to retrieve bolt after bolt & clearly turning my nose up at their offerings. (Once home I found that I already had some suitable lining bought in Goldhawk Road at a fraction of the price. Ain’t that just the way it goes? Anyway, no worries, the lawn is destined for prettier things than just being a lining).
So, long story short, I rifled through my stash & found enough fabric in there already to make not one dress but two. OK, it meant diverting some polka dots earmarked for Gertie’s Bombshell Dress, & some floral that was going to be a Chantilly, but why not? So first up, the full skirted Cambie dress with in-seam pockets (styled most delectably with teal tights & aqua shoes. ”Nice look, clashing legged lady”)
[Just look at that peripheral clutter....I failed to spy that, clearly!]
What I love about Sewaholic patterns, as well as the styling, is the amount of thinking that goes into the design to make our lives as sewsters easier. Tasia seems to invent shortcuts or simple processes that take the trick away from tricky.
There is real understanding that underlies the way Sewaholic garments are constructed. And what’s more the instructions and diagrams guide you through the whole method simply. Magically I could not believe that it fit me the first time – no muslin. I did breathe a sigh of relief as I had progressed quite far into the make before trying on for real (Barbarella helped all she could in the earlier stages)
I’m having so much practice sewing invisible zips that I no longer need to look it up ! (And yes Karen, I always use an invisible zip foot, can’t contemplate anything else) That feels like progress. Check out the way the waistband matches each side….Oh yeah !
But can I go on more about the prettiness of the Cambie? Just look at the neckline? And aren’t the gathered sleeves also gorgeous? You get the benefits of a sleeveless dress without feeling too revealing, or exposing too much upper arm if that’s something that could be seen as un-officey. And yes, for my second dress, that is an unseemly amount of rick rack I’ve used in every seam possible. By the time I was onto version 2 I was on a roll & didn’t want to miss an opportunity for some zigga zigga ah… Neckline, sleeves, pocket tops & waistband. Somehow it didn’t seem to be overkill (not to me anyway!!)
See, it has a different feel with the A line skirt.
And did I manage to make both to meet Tasia’s deadline? Not quite, but I kept in touch with the lovely Tasia & shared dress #2 with her.
Come on peeps, you know you want to make one for yourself! Pop on over, gather all your pennies for when it comes on sale. Good luck Tasia with the sales of this pattern. I really love it & thank you for involving me in your testing
And I have already worn this beauty out to hear/ see/ swoon at my teen/ uni musical hearthrob. Oh yes, you can’t go far wrong with polka dots & Martin Stephenson & the Daintees ….
Well, that is until superfans open their mouth & start talking gibberish that is. (Sorry Martin! I was starstruck!). He’s got some dates coming up in Scotland by the way ….I’d link to a lovely vid on YouTube (here he is) but I have a major technology fail – anything to do with flash / shockwave isn’t working on my browser & it’s pants, I even have to put the links in via html. I have a looming sense of doom that my laptop requires some of my quality time.