30.5.10

Twinkle Smock

I do love a smock.  I recently borrowed the Woody Allen film "Annie Hall" from my library, partly because it is a supposedly iconic film that I have not seen, but mostly because somebody cited Diane Keaton's wide legged pants as one of their favourite movie fashion moments in a Vogue forum.  So I watched the movie to see the wide legged pants, but actually, I much preferred her outfit in an earlier scene where she is in a cinema queue wearing a purple smock dress over a black turtleneck and jeans.  So perfectly seventies.

This is my latest version of the smock dress.




The pattern:  "White Magic" from Twinkle Sews. This pattern has lots of little details which made for an interesting sewing project.  The centre front panel has knife pleats.  The neckline has a series of narrow pleats.  There are ginormous, slouchy pockets.  There are exposed seams on the sleeves.  The back has a shirred panel, extension thingys and ties across the upper back.  Instead of shirring, I did what my sewing machine manual calls "smocking".  I'm sure anybody who really smocks would be appalled, but I sewed rows of gathering stitches, pulled up the threads and then sewed over the top with a straight stitch.  I did this because shirring elastic does not last very long in my climate.


The fabric:  This is a Cornwall linen from Tessuti in the most gogeous shade of red.  I don't know much about how fabric is made, but some of the threads seem almost iridescent, which show up the dress details beautifully.  I have noticed that the on-line store is out of red but they still have this fabric in other shades.  The pocket lining and bias binding were made from remnants of liberty print.  They show a little, but I don't mind this.  It coordinates well with the selvedge that I left exposed on the front side panels. I did have some red bias binding but it seemed a shame to use a polycotton binding on such a lovely linen (btw have you seen Gwen's bias maker?  I hope I never come across this maker as I would not be able to resist buying it.  I do find making bias tape to be one of those strangely satisfying sewing tasks).

Today I am wearing this dress over leggings.  I ducked into a funky little dress shop with a friend and the store owner asked me where I got the dress, which is most flattering, but I do find it embarrassing to admit that I made something when I am in a shop...sort of exposes me as not being a real customer.

Yesterday I wore the dress over jeans to go and eat fish and chips down on the Strand.  The weather here is just glorious here at the moment and we just sat and watched all the people out boating.


I have tried wearing the dress without leggings or jeans but it is probably a smidge short at the back for such a wide dress.  I was wearing wedges and felt a passing resemblance to Big Bird. I think it is the pockets.  I wouldn't make this pattern up in yellow!

15 comments:

  1. That is a REALLY lovely smock . It is so pretty but not in sacharine way . Quite French . Well done . I was once told by a dress shop proprieter that she had seen my shirt in Europe when she was over buying stock for her expensive boutique but that wholesale price was too high for her to stock it here . I had finished sewing it the night before !! I just floated out of there especially after I told her that I had made it.!! Enjoy your talent!!

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  2. Fabulous! Love the colour! Love the fabric! Love the style! Love the way you've constructed the outfits! You look super groovy in a unique and arty way!

    All that said, the back of the smock definitely makes constructing an outfit tricky.

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  3. Cute smock indeed. I love the details, they make it so unique!

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  4. How special. Looks lovely on you. The details are very original. Great work.

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  5. Wonderful Katherine...the colour looks lovely on you! I'm jealous of your weather up there.

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  6. That is gorgeous! The color is lovely. :)
    Xx

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  7. You have got to love a dress with lots of details it makes for such interesting sewing and wearing. I love the faux smocking and the knife pleats and the slouchy pockets. Smocks rock.

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  8. I LOVE it...I love everything you sew. I want to shop in your closet. This makes me want to buy the Twinkle Sews more than any other garment from it that I have seen.

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  9. Looks so pretty! I have been staring at that smock in my twinkle sews for ages, just still nervous to go aheadd with it. Seeing your finihsed top makes me filled with inspiration!

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  10. whow Kathernine I saw this pattern made on the net but your version is the best, you're motivating me again about twinkle sewing. So many details but this is what makes twinkle unique.

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  11. Rhis smock is gorgeous, and now I must go watch Annie Hall!

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  12. Love all your Twinkle projects! I like a lot of patterns from this book but still have yet to muster the courage to try them. May I ask a technical question regarding the printing using Acrobat? Do I have to 'shrink or fit to the printable area', would it distort the size? However, when I don't shrink, some of the edges just fall outside the page. Many thanks in advance if you could help!

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  13. I've had my eye on this pattern- those "interesting" details are intimidating- but now, seeing how lovely yours is, I must make it! You did such a good job with this tunic. Maybe it could work as a swim cover up too.

    To Siow Chin above, uncheck 'shrink to fit' when printing the Twinkle patterns. The printing is wonky, yes, but you'll be able to piece it together fine enough.

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  14. Oh my god, I need this! I love the groovy style of the 60's and 70's. Awesome!

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  15. Hi...Did u have a hard time putting the piecies together after downloading. U did a great job

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