Cashmerette · Dresses · Indie patterns

Another round with Lenox

 

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Singin’ in the rain on my grubby deck!

Why yes I have been doing silly poses in my garden this weekend, what have you been up to?

I think I’m giddy with the joy of actually finishing this make. I suspect sewing a shirtdress is rather like decorating a wedding cake or tiling a bathroom. You forget how complicated and time consuming it is until you start another one?

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It’s finished!!!!!!!!

This isn’t my first Lenox shirtdress. I’m actually surprised it took me so long to make another , its a lovely pattern. This time around I used a crisp cotton poplin from Spotlight. So much easier to sew than rayon, so stable! But boy did I use some poplin. Disclaimer: complete operator error. I managed to cut the sleeves pieces all the same way (hint, if your cutting multiple pieces on a single layer of fabric, follow the instructions and turn your pattern piece over hey?)

So after quick trip to Spotlight (thankfully only a 10 minute drive), I purchased another meter and away we go. Or not. In the flurry of pattern pieces (there are a lot of pattern pieces, especially as I had traced some off to grade between sizes) I managed to completely miss cutting out my button band. Naturally that needed 1.25 meters of length, not the extra meter I had. Cue another trip to Spotlight. Do they do a frequent flyer card I wonder?

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The “don’t make me go back for more fabric” face right there…

This Lenox is version A, with a full collar, and pleats rather than gathers. I thought this would work better with the stiffer poplin. Now I’m pretty loose goose with pattern matching , but did I think about the fact the small “flags” on the print are directional. Um, did I go to the gym today? Of course not.

So naturally when I realized I had cut my button bands with the print facing the wrong way I briefly considered buying yet MORE fabric & re-cutting them. Then I had a Chardonnay & gave myself a talking too. Only my Mother would notice. Hopefully?

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Yep, Mum noticed…

I did however re-cut my waistband, I’m think it’s an issue with my grading, but once again I was about 2.5 cm short when I came to attach my waistband. This time I measured before attaching, added that extra inch & re-cut, which I’m glad I did. My seams don’t exactly match my pleats because of the grading, so it that kind of thing will keep you awake at night, check & adjust before you attach the waistband.

I have lost a few kilos since my last Lenox, so I cut a 16 C/D Bust grading to an 18 waist & hips. The waist & hips are spot on, but I think next time I would go for an E/F cup, I have some pulling lines on the bodice which I think are due to a lack of space for the girls up front. I’d also like a little extra room to put another button on the band at the top.

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A full sleeve & bicep extension pack for this pattern had been released, I used the full bicep piece for this one (I did a full bicep adjustment myself last time, I’ve managed to misfile/lose that piece so being able to just print off the new sleeve & cut it out was rather handy!)

I wasn’t sure the pleats would be the go for me, sometimes they skim, sometimes they balloon out & give you an arse the size of Australia. I think we prefer skim yes? Of course pockets are always on point.

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Skim skim skim…

Now, shirtdress means buttons. Lots & lots of buttons. My Janome does a nifty job of button holes (such a step up from my old Toyota, 4 step manual process!!) but you’ve still got to sew those buttons on. I thought I was terribly clever figuring out a bodge job on my machine to do it , rather than my labored hand stitching. I know, it ridiculous, but like peeling potatoes, there are just some minor tasks I really don’t enjoy. Button sewing is one of those.

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I think we can say that’s a fail?

Well button sewing can be hazardous! This is even more ridiculous when you consider I actually have a button foot, I just didn’t know how to use it. Then I went to my sisters for lunch today & found a tutorial for just that in her Threads magazine. I really needed it yesterday, but hey, I’m sure I’ll make more shirt dresses.

I’d like to make one with the long sleeve option, perversely so I can roll the sleeves up. Nothing says “I mean business, let’s crack on & you can also admire my watch/bracelet/handsome forearm while I’m at it” like a rolled up sleeve. I love the contrast between feminine dress & masculine sleeve.

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I spend so much time sewing, I have no time to garden…honest.

Its been a slow process but I’m happy with my dress, although sadly given the arctic air con in my office I need to find a wee cardigan to match.

Hope you have had a fabulous week, I’ll leave you with Yorkshire puddings I’m very pleased with (although I showed my Mum & all she could say was “ewwww look at that bloody meat”! Sigh…) Edit: A few people have asked me for the recipe for my Yorkshire puds, so here it is !

In a jug whick together 3 eggs & 300 ml of whole milk with a good pinch of salt & pepper. Leave to rest for approx 30 mins, then whisk in 1 cup (150 grams) of plain flour. The consistancy should be like single cream, if its to thick add a bit more milk. Heat your roasting dish/muffin pan in a good hot 220C/430F oven, with a bit of oil (or better still, beef dripping!) Β in each dish. When its really hot, quickly take out of the oven & pour in your batter, it should sizzle when it hits the fat. Put straight back in the oven & cook for approx 30 mins until puffed & golden. DROWN in good gravy!

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Perfect rugby watching supper (don’t worry, there was gravy too!)

And my husband being deeply disloyal to Tommy & Tuppence, fraternizing with George, who my sister is currently dog sitting:)

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Animal whisperer x

Have a fab week, apparently Spring is approaching in my neck of the woods, despite the fact the wind is currently rolling straight off the snow!

Kristina x

 

13 thoughts on “Another round with Lenox

  1. This made me laugh so much! I must be your never-quite-cut-it-out-right twin; I always end up having to buy that extra metre ☺ The fit looks great but I empathise with not enough boobage on a dress. Looking forward to your next make x

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  2. Hi Kristina! As always I laughed out loud so many times while reading this that I think even my colleague in the next office started getting nervous. I just love a funny post about sewing adventures. What else is a girl to do when there is not enough fabric or the buttons just don’t want to get sewn on – have a glass of Chardonnay and laugh.
    The dress looks great! I had to squint at the screen to see what you meant about the directional flags. Nobody will notice, not even your Mother!!! I admired your first version and this one looks equally beautiful. I really want to make one too and I finally figured out why Cashmerette patterns do not fit me properly (it came to me in my sleep!). And I confirmed with very helpful Carrie at Cashmerette that I will probably need to reverse the forward shoulder adjustment they build into their patterns. Now armed with this knowledge, I just have to figure out how to fix this and I am good to go. And I am pre-warned about all the problems I may encounter on the way to a successful shirt-dress. I’ll buy about 10 meters of fabric from the start πŸ˜‰ Thank you!
    I love your attitude and your perseverance. You are a real inspiration!
    Inna

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    1. Oh Inna that such a lovely comment , thank youπŸ˜€ glad you enjoy the posts, especially the disasters (I love reading about those too!)πŸ˜„ Look fwd to seeing your Cashmerette makes , fitting is so complicated, but great when you get it right!πŸ‘πŸ₯‚

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  3. I love your dress & OMG your dinner looks SO GOOD!!! I like rare beef, myself, & I haven’t had a Yorkshire pudding in YEARS (I hate cooking)

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  4. Hello. The dress is amazing on you but I must confess I would love to know you receipt for Yorkshire pudding. My husbands parents were from York and I am from Portugal. We are all now Canadian. But my receipt seems a bit to eggy. Can u share your tips? Mine do puff up but they don’t taste as bread like as I have had them in a traditional English home. Best wishes.

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  5. I am in awe of anyone who could make a shirtdress, never mind all the ups and downs – that just gives it character πŸ™‚ It looks just lovely. Now we need the Spring so you can wear it!

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