Thursday, January 13, 2011

Swing dress sew-along

Have you all heard about Casey's swing dress sew-along? I am planning on participating, so this will be my first sew-along! I already have the e-pattern, and if I don't find some great rayon fabric this weekend, I'll be ordering some online. (The Anglophile in me is halfway tempted by this novelty fabric on eBay -- someone reiterate how ridiculous a dress made out of fox hunting fabric would look, and I'll get over it.) ;-)

I am planning on making my version nursing friendly, and if my modifications are successful, I will post detailed instructions on how to change the pattern for nursing. I've contacted Mrs. Chancey (who designed the pattern) and she had a good suggestion on how to make the nursing modifications, so I am pretty confident it will work.

I am hoping this sew-along will encourage me to really take the time to make the dress well. Lately I have been desiring to increase the quality of my sewing projects to ensure a beautiful end result that I will really enjoy wearing -- not just zooming through as quickly as possible so as to have another item in my wardrobe. This means taking the time to make a muslin and check for fitting, lining skirts, considering nicer seam finishes, etc. I'm looking forward to getting started!


  1. Allow me to be the first to tell you that the "fox hunting fabric" would look absolutely ridiculous, not to mention entirely out of place, on a dress. And I honestly do mean that.

  2. I made a nursing-friendly Swing Dress by slicing down the middle of the waistband (having it close with snaps), and having a lined waistband go over the top of that. The lined one was only attached at the right side, so I could untie it and have the left completely free, which made way for opening the front. (I didn't add a side zipper, since I was able to wiggle it on without it with the slit to the waist. I should probably add that I'm quite small-busted, even while breastfeeding.) I've explained that very, very badly. I can't wait to see what you do with it!

    And, I rather like the fox hunting fabric, but you might not be able to wear the dress as often as you'd like, with how much precious time you're putting into it, if you used it. This is coming from someone who has made the Swing Dress in bright orange, and who had a shop owner remark at how colorfully I was dressed the other day--the shop is one that carries ethnic clothes (bright, busy, colorful), so her saying that was probably mild to what others might have said ("garish" and "mismatched" come to mind...). I would probably use the fox hunting fabric. Consider yourself warned.

  3. Thanks, Hannah -- there's not really enough fabric to make a dress anyway so we're all safe. :-P

    Serena, your explanation here makes more sense to me than the one on the S&S board! Thanks! I puzzled and puzzled over it but could not wrap my head around what you were describing. If the method I'm envisioning ends up not working, I will try something like what you've described here. I happen to like your orange swing dress so I suppose it's all a matter of preference... I say wear what you enjoy, wear what your husband likes to see you in, and that's that! ;-)

  4. I would love if you would post on how to make this dress good for nursing! I love wearing dresses but it's rare that I find one appropriate for nursing in. I also had wanted to join the sew a long but things are a little rough right now to be involved in another project.
    Can't wait to see the finished product!

  5. I can't wait to see how it turns out! I'm just finishing up the linen skirt... pictures soon :)

  6. Hi, Laura. I don't know if you remember me from the Smith's home. Our son married Maegan.

    Anyway, I wanted to pass on a pattern to you. Our daughter Ashley enjoys sewing vintage clothing styles. She recently started a blog: I really liked the frock you posted on here and so I searched for another 50s pattern to make Ashley for her birthday. The one I found was incredibly quick to make and looks cute. You can see it and the pattern info on her blog.

  7. Hello, Kelly! Yes, I do remember you and your lovely family. Thanks for sharing Ashley's blog. I will go take a peek! :)