I’ve been busy sewing stuff for Me Made May and now I have a blog backlog. First up, the big reveal, what I made with these.
Well, a certain small girl got invited to a Worst Witch party. And seeing as how she’s into pink and pretty and floral things, there wasn’t an appropriate item in her wardrobe and our fancy dress box is rather short on witchy things.
I was going to find a big black grown up size t shirt to use as fabric, but I came across a slimmer fit one I never wear any more, that was 2nd hand to me in the first place.
First job, to cut off the collar, fold the raw edge in and handstitch into place to create a neat new neckline.
The t shirt had a kind of faced vertical slit which I folded over on itself to make a placket. The bottom looked a bit fudged, but a few button holes and some “vintage” buttons (i.e. from my grandmother in laws stash) later and it looked grand (well, if you didn’t look too closely).
Those of you paying attention may wonder where the pink t shirt came in. Well, that was a bit of a red herring, it’s a current t shirt in good state that fits her so I used it to judge the amount I needed to take in the side and under arm seams.
Now I had a really long t shirt top that would be a little baggy on her (always gotta plan for growing room). Next the skirt. I managed to cut 2 squares out of the drapey netting fabric which I didn’t hem (shock horror) and one slightly larger square out of the polyester lining fabric, which I did hem.
Then I did some rough caluclations to work out the approximate radius of the circle I needed for the waist (radius = circumference (in this case twice the t shirt width) divided by two times pi (which I approximated as 6)). I folded the fabric so I could mark the radius on several times, then drew my circle free hand..
Then I overlaid the three squares, each rotated a little, so I got 12 points and sewed them together in the middle around my marked cirle.
Then I cut the centre out and sewed it to the bottom of the t shirt. Actually a sewed it about 4 inches up which means the bottom of the t shirt is inside the top of the skirt hiding my raw edges. Pretty amazingly my sketchy first guess at waistsize came out just right (despite taking in the t shirt further after calculating and not remembering seam allowances). Also pretty amazingly the length came out spot on, nicely long (to allow growing room) but not dragging on the floor.
Then we just needed some accessories. A red scarf of mine to be the sash (tied the same side as on the cover of the book), a badge made by big brother, a hat made rather hastily by me and a broomstick I helped her make from a cardboard tube and some paper. Oh and not forgetting she found out her stripey socks, borrowed a “satchel” and made a cat to go inside it (which is the only way Mildred can get her cat aloft in the first book as it’s too scared to sit on the broomstick).
I also decided to use the occassion as a spur to finish a cape that I started for her over 4 years ago (after her brother was given one). It’s shiney satiney horrid to work with fabric, semicircle, reversible, purple with silver stars and silver ric rack round the neck on one side and silver with purple planet and shooting star and purple rick rac on the other. It is not my finest work and I wasn’t inspired to take photo’s. Appliqueing satin is horrid, even though I interfaced the back. And as I guessed she didn’t want to wear it to the party as in the book the cloaks are all black. I made her wear it on the way though and she’s wore it since and used it as a blanket to cover her babies in their pram and a picnic blanket for them to sit on, so as an item it was well received, just didn’t meet the strict authenticity standards for the costume.
The dress I’m really pleased with though. The dropped waist really suits her. And she wore it the rest of the day after the party and put it on the next day. I was amazed, little miss only pink and flowery will do choosing to wear an all black dress. It has gone in her wardrobe rather than the fancy dress box. I am honoured. And I’m also kicking myself I didn’t bother to add pockets now. (I hate going back and altering things once I’ve finished them).