Here Comes the Rain Again

1 na piaci

1 Rain again silk from Simply FabricsI didn’t think this print of figures under umbrellas in heavy rain was going to be of much interest to anyone but myself and maybe a few who sew.  But there I was, in Split, Croatia, feeling pretty cool in this light silk (from Simply Fabrics at £8 a1 selfie metre) during a month-long spell of high temperatures that threatened to break 100-year records, and both the long-suffering locals and exhausted-looking tourists would occasionally give it wistful or WTF glances.

It’s very Londony!  In fact, when I got back to London I was treated to two entire days of dingy skies and the exact same rain as in the print, including a total drenching a long way from home during blackberry-picking!

I shouldn’t have had any issues with sewing Dahlia.  It’s my third.  I knew how much to trim off the neckline so the bra straps are in line with the dress straps (Summer Dahlia  sorted that).  I knew to lower the armholes and interface the waist yoke but to omit the yoke lining which adds too much bulk for the zip to glide.  And the silk, which behaved perfectly between needle and plate, promised to give the drape with which to achieve the sultriness promised on the envelope art.  So, in expectation of perfect results, I started with the skirt, patiently sewing French seams at all the vertical joins.  1t blind hem stitchingI used scraps to practice the blind hem on my machine (Notice my stitches look rather like the lashings of rain…)  But having sewed the skirt, just as I was a mouse-click away from buying a nice cashmere cardigan to match – oh sweet hubris! – I got round to the bodice and found the waist yokes simply didn’t match the bodice in width.  ‘Hang on‘, thought I as I tried to cobble new pieces together from scraps, ‘didn’t this happen before?’  When making my Winter Dahlia, I assumed the same kind of shortfall was my fault because I didn’t cut the lining yoke on the bias, or something.  So I did some belated research.

‘My yoke isn’t wide enough for bodice back!’ said a similarly-challenged seamstress commenting on the Dahlia Sew Along, Part 6.

‘Maybe you’ve forgotten to sew the back darts on the bodice,’ the Sewalong replied.

(You know, I think I’d notice that!)

Maybe I’ve cut them upside down‘.

Sadly, in describing a myriad other problems with the pattern, many bloggers blamed themselves, as I did too, initially.  But I’m getting the big picture.  It’s not us.  It’s Dahlia. Do you have a pattern that’s just toxic? One that keeps tempting you back like a glamorous friend that turns up asking to sleep on your sofa and you think ‘Great!’ forgetting how last time she invited all her dodgy mates back for a party and trashed the place while you were at work…

But it’s not all gloom!  Despite the crude upper half (both the back and front bodice just seem to sag), I enjoy wearing this dress.  It’s soft yet cool against the skin (and not at all sheer).  With an old cardie from the collection, it’s warm enough for the cold summer days that inevitably await. And I discovered upon returning from the holiday that the dress is perfect for my almost-forgotten Lapis Lazuli necklace.  1 Laurel with Lapis Lazuli

Link: an almost-forgotten, brooding, perfect rain song by the Eurythmics

10 thoughts on “Here Comes the Rain Again

  1. I’ve come across fishy patterns but I don’t notice it at first or second go around, always blaming myself! Good accurate pattern drafting is hard and the really good ones are worth their weight. And not to open up a stinky kettle of fish, but I think there is in the SBC a sense that certain indie pattern makers can do no wrong. We all make mistakes! Just own it and move on. Love the umbrella fabric!

  2. I now feel totally vindicated about not making the Dahlia – it’s just a shame I didn’t make the decision before buying the PDF, printing it out and sticking it together. Your rainy day version, however, looks brilliant on you – no wonder you got lots of admiring glances as you stand out amongst all the others in their tourist uniform of shorts and t-shirt.
    I wasn’t going to click on the song link because it’s an old favourite and I could probably sing you all the words but you’ve never done me any harm so I’ll spare you, however I did in the end and enjoyed it all over again 🙂

  3. You almost tempted me to give Dahlia another try! Pretty dress, despite the troublesome pattern. I made a muslin and never got back to making the gazillion adjustments to fix the disaster dress. I admire your perseverance!

    • I’d feel uneasy about discouraging anyone from a sewing project and I did get a compliment on the dress today from a very vibrant-looking young woman which made me happy – but boy is this dress trouble and doesn’t seem to get easier.

  4. Love fabrics like this – they bring a smile to your face.
    I can’t bear patterns that have errors. It never make sense to me, as I was under the impression that the pattern companies use a lot of testers before releasing a pattern.

  5. Lovely you. Lovely dress. Lovely fabric. I passed it up, but I like the way it looks in a dress, especially with a bit of distance.

    This and the subsequent post did not reach me by email. I feel out of the loop and disappointed as you have not only been on holiday, but you have made loads of beautiful things.

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