Vincent VG


1 FabricI got this amazing jersey from Jeff and rushed to show it to a friend of mine, an art lover I see a few times a year who I can count on to enthuse unreservedly about my more offbeat finds.  Not this time.  She looked doubtful.  ‘I think,‘ she said slowly, ‘that might work in small amounts.’

What the…?!     😡  

Does this happen to you?  Do you sometimes grow out of friends you assumed were for life?!

Oh, I jest  🙂

Mccalls 6559

The pattern, McCall’s 6559, I had in the stash as I’d once made it into a vest dress for a friend in Croatia (review here).  It’s quick and easy (if oversized) but I like some ambition in my projects to help me learn and improve so I decided to add a couple of elements to the simple design.  What I really wanted was to make this unusual – I was determined to celebrate my find!

The first deviation from View C was the 13cm splits to the side seams.  So far, so good.  1 split

Less successful were the ruffles I painstakingly cut and folded from bias strips of silky georgette.  After I attached them to the armholes, they simply didn’t sit subtly and softly enough so had to be cut off.

1t armhole frill

Instead I bound the neckline and armscyes with loops of 4cm cut longways, their total length some 5cm shorter than the length of garment and stretched lightly to fit.  I don’t like how the instructions ask for the neckline and armholes to be folded under twice to a total of 1.5cm and stitched.  This would make the neckline really low.  On the other hand, the armholes do need to be cut away if you’re going to use binding.  I removed 1cm and it’s not quite enough.

1 binding

To complete the look I call ‘Urge Overkitsch’, I borrowed my daughter’s nail varnish (hmm, too pearly) and decorated a pair of flip flops by knotting them with 100 water balloons (£2 a packet from Tiger).  It’s a project that works best with the plainest of plastic flip flops which I didn’t have so these are my son’s Hawaianas.  He’s really mad about it; tells me to get my own flip flops to tie balloons to.  But he wears them around the garden, I notice.

Jeff always chats to me about my purchases.  He couldn’t tell me much this time except that this thick, cotton-like jersey is produced in Germany and some kind of royalty fee is involved in the reproduction which is why at £12 it’s more expensive than most of his fabrics.  Do you like it?  I have a metre left, enough for a T-shirt,  so any suggestions for what might work are most welcome.  And if you can, please let me know if you recognize any of the paintings in the collage.  Here’s another close-up:1 VVG Fabric

1 Running

26 thoughts on “Vincent VG

  1. Love the dress, the fabric is fabulous, it deserves a big canvas 😉
    Great idea with the ballons, you can never be covered in enough colour, must be fun to wear.
    The picture with the bed is by Van Gogh – Vincents room, Arles
    and the pink flowers in the vase is also by Van Gogh, although they look white in the pic. All the other paintings seem familiar, but I can’t pinpoint to any particular artist at the moment, although the paintings all seem to be impressionistic.

    • Thanks Morven (what a lovely name!). You’re right: a big canvas is called for. When I first started sewing, I was all apologetic about my tastes and hid all the interesting fabrics from view by putting them inside bags as lining. I still have those bags, boring on the outside, and regret that no one sees how fun they actually are!

  2. I love the fabric, it is wonderful and the dress looks great. I made a maxi from that pattern last weekend and I agree it is pretty low in the front. I made a tank top with the pattern after that and cut the neckline higher. The shoes are fun!

  3. So much fun, Marianna! You’re making me want to de-nunnify my clothing choices. There was a great exhibition of van Gogh’s landscapes here a couple of years ago and I think I *might* recognize two of the paintings, although he did so many of haystacks and countryside I could be mistaken. I’ll have to consult the nice catalogue that my friend brought me from an exhibition in Amsterdam. Lovely photos, too.

  4. This dress is so fun. I love van gogh and suspect all the paintings in the print are his. It is great that you shot it in a wheat field. I want to start taking photos in more exciting places. This shoot is very inspirational.

  5. I am always attracted to cloth like this. I love the accuracy of the digital printing and it is fun to look at when it is on. But (from my own experience) you need to “read” all patterny fabrics from a distance, when the actual colours appear to coalesce into one dominant shade. This looks like a light, yellowish brown and you have highlighted that by wearing it in the hayfield – very clever on two or three levels Marianna. Because these shades are a bit warm and muted for you, you have put them with brightly coloured (gorgeous) shoes and nails. This ensures that the brighter shades in the pattern – pink, orange and turquoise – are picked up. Lovely effect.

    • The cleverness is accidental, I assure you, but I did wonder what you might have to say about the yellowish brown tones which are really not in my usual palette.

  6. Will you stop putting such gorgeous ‘modelly’ photos on your blog as it tempts me to buy the patterns. I bought the Aster after your last post and now I’ve got to make bloomin’ buttonholes which I normally try to avoid. This fabric looks fantastic with your colouring and those flipflops are amazing. I think it’s great that you wanted to make the dress more ‘unusual’ even after using a fabric covered in mini Van Gogh paintings. It’s a shame you’re not here at the moment as we have field after field full of enormous sunflowers you could have posed in although I can’t spot that painting of his even though I’ve zoomed in on you.

    • Field after field of sunflowers sounds heavenly and against the rich blue of the sky too! One of my favourite VG paintings is of a church in France (Auvers) though it’s not featured on the fabric. But though I associate him with the hot summers of Europe, how strange to discover that he lived in South London too when younger, and did lots of walking and reading there but no painting that I know of.

  7. I have made a dress or 2 with unusual prints like that and they’re such a great way to get a truly individual look, without going into the land of twee. You look lovely, it looks very comfortable and the neck and armhole finishing is very well done too, which is hard to get right so I will make a note of your tips. Van Gogh definitely.

  8. I think your ex-friend was just jealous and hoping you’d donate the fabric to her. I love it all – the fabric, the dress, the balloons and the fab pictures romping in the hay. Gorgeous!

  9. Love this print. To make it into a simple vest dress is perfect. As for the left over fabric what about a deer and doe plaintain t shirt?

  10. I was going to say it has a very different effect when you step back, but Kate got in first!! It looks nice and soft, such a bonus in the heat. Perfect marriage of pattern and fabric Marianna -yay!

  11. Wow! What a fabric! I love Van Gogh, and I love your dress!
    The paintings from your close-up picture are:
    Flower fields in Holland, Fishing in Spring, Still life with Blue Enamel Coffeepot, Still life: Vase with Pink Roses, Wheat Field with Sheaves, Room at Arles, Daubigny’s Garden, Landscape with House and Ploughman, The hill of Monmartre with Quarry, Houses at Auvres.
    I like your idea to take photos in the field with a tree in the background that looks like a cypress, reminds of a similar Van Gogh painting.. Very clever! 🙂

    • Hello Julia, no, it’s not the same but in the same vein. Mine has skulls, flowers, kites and palettes superimposed, but no butterflies. I‘m tempted too!!

      By the way, Jeff also had another (i.e. third) jersey fabric with paintings, but they were very Italian and religious in theme, with Jesus (on the cross) and Virgin Mary… very eye-catching but not me.

  12. What a gorgeous dress. That fabric is amazing. Are you thinking of starting to sew again? Or perhaps you are sewing but not blogging. I keep thinking I’ll start sewing again, but mostly I look at my machine and wonder why it’s so hard to get going on something?

    • Thanks Alys! I actually am sewing still, but never enough time to photograph and blog. And isn’t it true that getting started is the hardest bit (for many things)! I enjoy seeing and reading what everyone else is up to though; it’s the next best thing.

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