Thursday, 27 October 2016

The comfort of the familiar

When the seasons turn, particularly from summer into autumn, my sewing tends to slow down for a while. For some reason, even though I carry on wearing a lot of my cotton dresses all year round and just add extra layers accordingly, it always seems to take my brain a little while to adjust to the fall in temperatures.


It's probably in no small part due to the fact that I'm always over ambitious in my sewing plans and when September arrived, and then quickly rolled into October, there were still a fair few patterns and fabrics on my summer sewing list that I slowly admitted to myself would really be best put on hold until spring.

Realising that and switching to thinking about cosier clothes always takes me a little while though. I don't know why really, because I'm not someone who mourns the end of summer. I do love it while it's here, but I also like the fact that we have different seasons. I'd always rather have sun than a dismal day, but I'm not too bothered about the fact that the sun comes with cooler temperatures at this time of year. After all, as long as you've got the right clothes on then you can cope with the cold. And it's not like it ever gets that cold in southern England anyway.


Over the past couple of years that I've been sewing, my main response to get me through the seasonal shift is to reach for my tried and tested favourite, and it will come to no surprise to anyone who's been reading my blog for more than about 5 minutes that the pattern in question is the Emery dress.

As far a I'm concerned, it's a pattern that's always going to produce winning results. It's also a pattern that, in the right print at least, definitely gets year-round wear in my wardrobe so is a nice transition - not so summery that it won't see the light of day for the next 6 months, but not so autumnal that it's a shock to my (evidently fragile!) system.

Usually just one version of the dress will be enough to help me bridge the gap, but this year I made two.


The first is in a Japanese import cotton that I got from Frumble a few months ago. It's a teal/blue background with a fun small-scale print featuring a whole load of different kitchen items. They only seem to have a remnant of this colourway available now, but they also have it on a natural background if you're interested. The thing I love about prints like this is that they just look like a random pattern from a distance, and it's only when you look up close that you realise my dress is actually covered with scales, mixing bowls, oven gloves and all manner of other paraphernalia.


The second is using the fruit gum blue print from the Cotton and Steel Fruit Dots collection. I picked it up in the sale from The Village Haberdashery, but they don't seem to have it in stock any more. It's one of those excellent prints that feature lots of colours so can be combined with a range of different cardigans and things. I mean, it practically makes it sensible for me to be walking round covered in chewing gum wrappers!


There's not much to say about the making of these dresses that I haven't already said in my posts about my previous Emery dresses (most recently here). The only thing that I've started doing differently is to lengthen the skirt by an inch. The length of the skirt as drafted is absolutely fine on me when I first make dresses, but I've noticed with some of my older dresses that have now been washed infinite times that they gradually shrink just a little bit and start to feel a touch on the short side. Either that or I'm growing, which I doubt because I've been the same height since I was about 12!


So there we go, my mental conversion to sewing for autumn is now complete and I've drawn up a little list of things I'd like to make over the coming months. How do you feel about sewing for different seasons?

8 comments:

  1. lovely colours in both of these dresses ;o)

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  2. Both are great dresses. I can see the second one paired with color tights too, if you like them.
    For me, summer spring and summer sewing are the best. I love light colors and it's a bit difficult to find winter fabric like this. But as you, I layer. Not big problems but I prefer walking arround with a novelty print dress shown without cardigans, jumpers and that.

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    1. Thank you! They'll both probably be worn with coloured tights - I do like them, but I need to get some new ones at the moment because the ones that I was wearing last winter all got broken/shrunk in the wash!

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  3. Ruth these are lovely, especially the chewing gum one. Enjoy wearing these as it starts getting colder. I like the idea of coloured tights too. Great idea Mayumi

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    1. Thank you Louise! Sounds like I need to go and find some new coloured tights!

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  4. You have such an enviable collection of Emery dresses, Ruth. I especially love the one with all the cakes and baking utensils - so cute! My Autumn/winter sewing basically consists of me wanting to sew ALL the needlecord, hehe. And winter dressing just means wearing thicker cardigans and tights. By the way if you're looking for new coloured tights White Stuff have some lovely tights at the moment. I stocked up last month on sparkly and polka dot pairs!

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    1. Thank you! Ooooh, I'm liking the sound of your needlecord plans - I've got some fun spotty needlecord on the way to me in the post at the moment too! I'll have to check out White Stuff for some coloured tights - I'm definitely lacking in that area at the moment!

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