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Lonsdale Sew-Along: Completed!

This August I’m sewing along with Tasia at A bunch of talented seamsters and I are all making her just-released Lonsdale dress, which happens to also be a summer essential – happy day! This post marks its completion.

I was walloped at work this week. Though I’d made great progress on my Lonsdale last weekend, Tasia’s baby steps seemed like mountains to me this week.  She whizzed through stitching the skirt, inserting the zipper, and hemming the skirt in what seemed like the blink of an eye as I found myself under a pile of papers with unexpected deadlines looming.

At a moment of weakness (and procrastination, I’ll admit), I turned on my sewing machine last night.  Every stitch was surrounded by a stream of scientific ideas as my mind raced, preoccupied with my work.  But, thanks to Tasia’s detailed instructions and Sew-Along posts, my sewing went as quickly as hers seemed to.  Before I knew it, my dress was ready, and I truly had to get back to my proposal writing.

I just love this dress.  The gold in the flowers gives a wonderful sheen to the fabric; there’s just enough swoosh in the skirt for a bit of fun; and the fitted bodice has such a neat twist to it.

As I described earlier, I decided to make the straps a bit shorter so that I could tie the dress as a halter.  The back is supported by spiral steel boning, which is surprisingly unnoticeable during wear.  In going over the self-portraits I took for this post, I did notice that the boning was weighing down on the grosgrain ribbon waistband, so I will likely go in and add a row of hand stitches to the lining at the bottom of the boning channel an eighth of an inch or so above the waistband in the hopes that that will help the boning fight gravity.  I also ended up doing a lapped zipper because I wanted to practice another one of the techniques that I learned in Gertie’s online class.  I do like Tasia’s method, but I thought the lapped zipper would better disguise my huge metal zipper (that was the perfect color and mere pennies, so I disregarded the size of its zipper pull).

Not only is this dress is one of my Summer Essentials, but I’m also entering it into this week’s Sew Weekly challenge, “Peer Review,” in which we were supposed to use inspiration from a previous Sew Weekly garment. Just the week prior, Sarah Gabbart, one of the weekly contributors, made her very own Lonsdale for the “Go West” challenge.  Perfect timing, I say!

Here are my facts à la Sew Weekly.

Fabric: teal floral Japanese cotton from
Pattern: Sewaholic 1102 Lonsdale Dress
Year: 2011
Notions: green metal zipper, green grosgrain ribbon, spiral steel boning

31 thoughts on “Lonsdale Sew-Along: Completed!

  1. I LOVE it!!! Great job! I really like it as a halter dress too! That fabric is so lovely! And I can sympathize with proposal writing!! Good luck!

    1. Thanks. I love the dress, too. Though I had to work all day yesterday, I wore it anyway, and it made me so happy. As for the proposal writing, so far, so good. I’d love to finish it up today, but that goal might be a bit optimistic!

    1. Thanks! I just used the length Tasia suggested in the pattern. When I tried on the dress, it seemed to fall perfectly under my knees, and I thought it was really flattering. For a second I considered actually calculating what the golden ratio would suggest for the hem line, but I was in a crunch for work, so I figured since it looked good as it was, I’d go with it!

  2. Great job! I only have to finish my hem. I have that same bit of rolling on the sides and I did not add boning. Perhaps we both needed a small sway back adjustment?

    1. I followed Tasia’s directions for hemming by hand, and it was both fun and easy! I’m pretty sure it’s also the hem that Gertie uses for her bombshell dress (I’m getting my money’s worth for that class!). I thought it would be tough to catch just a thread or two, but at least with my fabric it was straightforward. As for the sway back adjustment, I actually triple checked that after Sunni of a Fashionable Stitch’s post on fitting the Lonsdale. I didn’t see any problems. The bit of rolling is focused right in between the two pieces of boning, not all the way across through the zipper, so my instincts are to blame it on gravity and my inexperience. I hope a bit of stitching will help. But, the next time I make this dress, I’ll definitely triple check for a sway back adjustment again.

    1. Thanks! I saw your bodice on the Flickr group, and you’ve chosen a fun print! It should be easy enough for you to finish up now that the bodice is done. I just flew through all of the final steps. Good luck, and happy sewing!

    1. Thanks ML! I’ve definitely been putting a lot of energy into my sewing when I have free time. Times like these, when I have deadlines that force me to work long hours, make me realize just how much free time I’ve been allowing myself! Though I do admit that I’m really enjoying getting back into the process of writing new ideas – at least now that I’ve accepted the deadline and have my ideas mostly in place. Hopefully that bodes well for the career path I’m on!

  3. Love, love , love! I can tell the dress is “sewn well” and the colour is perfect on you. I’m sure you will wear this baby lots. Great job!

    1. Thanks! I’ve already gotten a full day’s wear out of it. I also hope to pull it out again for Self-Stitched September ’11!

  4. Pingback: Cotton. | Sew Well

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