Jan 25, 2013
So much to cover today, friends, so let's get to it.
First, remember Debi and her arguably shark-jumping 1940 McCall Project? Did I mention that I own a swimsuit pattern Debi would like very much to have? Well, readers, after considerable whining and emotional blackmail -- on my part -- I've decided to give it to her.
Remember that scene in In the Good Old Summertime where Mr. Oberkugen (played by the inimitable S.Z. "Cuddles" Sakall) gives his prized Stradivarius to that annoying violin prodigy, Louise, who's secretly in love with Van Johnson (who, in turn, is secretly in love with Judy Garland)? As difficult as it is for Mr. Oberkugen to part his beloved instrument, he realizes that a Stradivarius belongs in the hands of somebody who will play it as it's meant to be played.
Well, that's the way I feel about McCall 3640. I'm never going to sew it and it means a lot to Debi.
Please don't get the wrong idea: I'm getting something in return, and I'll be blogging about that as soon as it arrives. And speaking of patterns, look what came in the mail yesterday, almost like a gift from the universe rewarding me for being such a selfless person. It's the Marian Martin pattern I'd publicly coveted from Studio G Patterns where I bought my McCall pattern! Thank you, Genny!
You see, friends: be nice to others and you get stuff.
Meanwhile, I've been hard at work at my McCall pattern, the day dress from 1939.
I didn't tell you this, but last weekend at the flea market I stumbled upon a treasure trove of fine-quality shirting (Italian, apparently) in roughly three yard pieces for $5 each. (I got five for $20. ) Well one of the pieces, a lovely cotton flannel that actually more closely resembles Pendleton wool though a burn test reveals it is indeed cotton, was a little too orangey-pink to suit me or Michael. But I thought it would be perfect for Cathy's 1939 dress.
It is fabulous fabric and a pleasure to sew with -- so much better than 100% polyester. And sew with it I have, nearly all day yesterday.
I think the color and design really suit the period. It also has a lovely drape. My only question now is will the long sleeves make it look too Mennonite? I don't mean to offend my Mennonite readers, it's just that Cathy is about as Mennonite as Mitzi Gaynor and this is already a modest dress, what with that buttoned-up plastron and all. Plus it's a lot of plaid.
Oddly, I've actually had to raise the waistline on this version, which I did by simply widening the seam allowance where bodice and skirt meet, since the pieces were already cut. The problem with that is that the bodice and skirt widen as you move up and down respectively on those two sections, leaving the dress a bit too big in the waist. (You'll notice that while the bodice has gathers at the waist, the skirt is supposed to lie flat. So I'll have to do some work on it today.)
And then there's the question of those sleeves...
Would a winter dress have had long sleeves in 1939? Probably, right? Of course, once it's dressed up with hat, gloves and mink stole -- oh, didn't I tell you? -- I think she'll look more like Norma Shearer in The Women than Kelly McGillis in Witness. Cross your fingers.
Readers, that's all for today. I hope your sewing projects are proceeding apace and you're staying warm -- or comfortably cool, as the case may be.
What are you thoughts about long-sleeve dresses with high necklines? Too modest for these sexy times?
Have a great day, everybody!