Pancakes and rings

This week just gone Stress Bunny morphed into Productive Kiwi and I had a really successful wedding planning week. All the honeymoon items are booked now: accommodation, car hire, flights and I even made up a little Google map of things to do and driving directions (yes I am that nerdy).

My dress is coming along well, we’ll get to that in a minute, and two of my three bridesmaids are dressed, the last one will sort herself out I am sure. One of them has even bought shoes, make up, jewellery, hair accessories and even a matching clutch purse.

But you know when things are going quite well, too well actually, and you get a little suspicious, a little voice starts in the back of your head, “this isn’t supposed to be this easy, there must be a hiccup coming soon”…So yesterday we went into town to see the jeweller who made my engagement ring. His shop is in the one of the many confusing internal shopping arcades in the central city, we hadn’t been there for a while but eventually we found our bearings and went up the right staircase to find…a pancake house! I thought he couldn’t have gone far but Google didn’t help and neither did the arcade directory and after a bit of a walk around with no luck we were resigned that he’d either moved or gone out of business. After a half-hearted look at some of the other jewellers we did what you do when you’ve come all that way only to be disappointed…we went and had pancakes for lunch.

Consolation pancakes

So on to the dress: Earlier this week I lengthened the internal bodice and added the boning to test fit and feel. Boning has always been a bit mysterious for me but now that I’ve done it, it’s really not. Attaching the boning was no where near as technically difficult and I thought it would be, instead it was more awkwardly tricky. I bought a plastic boning, by the meter, the kind that is already within a cotton sleeve, you trim it to length and curve off each end.

from Butterick 5325 instructions

The boning has a natural curve to it but I got the first one pinned down and centered really easily. It was the second piece that caused problems, you see with one piece of boning attached you can’t handle the fabric the same way when pinning, it’s hard to explain but the problem is compounded with each piece you attach. By piece number four I really needed an extra two sets of hands, one pair to hold the thing in place, another to pick up the fabric and my own hands handling the pins. Well I got there in the end and stitched them all down using my zipper foot. Here is the result (note that it is now a tad too big but this will be simple to address when I make the actual bodice). I don’t have a picture of me trying it on but I really enjoyed how the inner bodice felt and made my body look.

Bonned bodice on Scarlett

Next up I attached it to the dress and altered the neck line, here is a dodgy camera phone photo in my laundry. I intended a better photo with tripod and remote but fiancé came home from his recent trip away earlier than expected and thwarted my plans.

My laundry...oh and my dress

On the weekend I tackled the dress back, which I can share with you now that it is impossible to jinx. I really wanted to add in a big pleat, firstly because one of the dresses I tried on had that detail and I loved it and secondly I really, really wanted to get rid of that unsightly center back seam below the zipper opening. It’s also my compromise to not having a huge train, I want something in-between to suit a garden wedding. I refuse to deal with bustling, I just want a bit of volume and to add some interest. My dress is not going to be the most complicated or fussy, I’m going for amazing fit and elegance above all else.

For a couple of weeks I did a lot of brain sewing, imagining how the heck I was going to make this work and finally I settled on a plan.

Center back pattern piece

I used the center back pattern piece (shortened), cutting one on the fold and two more separately and then separated the back seam of the dress and sewed it all in place.

A lot of fabric to manoeuvre now!

I know what I'm doing...I think...

My first attempt was far too large so I halved my pieces (which now that I think about it makes sense math-wise) and it was a much better result. So here is a before, after and after again picture, you’ll notice the hem just needs some correcting.

before, after...and after again

So I guess technically my trail run is finished and now there are no excuses to go out this weekend and buy some amazing fabric. Except that first I need some shoes because I realised I may not have enough hem at the front, and I need the shoes to adjust this…so that is today’s mission, a little reward for sorting out the honeymoon details and a little cheer-me-up for losing my ring guy (yes, I said ‘my’, I can be a over-protective like that).

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