Flora, meet Emery!

The move-in is moving along. And I’ve finally reached the state of settled-in-ness I need to actually start sewing again! How weird that I need an orderly work area in which to make a terrific mess, but there’s no time for self analysis.

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Independence Day Dress. Woah! I just got splashed by a wave! Oh well, it’s washable!

I just love dots. And what’s more summery than a nice nautical navy and white? So this cotton was calling out to be a beach walking dress. I actually started it as part of the Franken-Indie contest on the Monthly Stitch – back in June! But time got away from me so I packed it, pinned together, in my sewing box and finished it here. Oh well. I combined the tank version of the Flora bodice (from By Hand London) with the gathered skirt from the Emery Dress (by Christine Haynes). I adore the Flora circle skirt, but it’s too flippy for the windy conditions here.

Cotton is the way to go on the beach! I lined the bodice with yellow China silk, which breathes, feels yummy on the skin and is pretty, too.

I put the zipper in the left side seam instead of the center back. This was really a test for a very large print fabric I don’t want to break up with a center back seam. It worked, except it limited me to one side pocket. I think I could insert a pocket in front of the zip, but didn’t bother to figure out how on this test model. One pocket works for keys and a phone and that’s all I need for a beach walk!

A girl’s gotta have a pocket, and it might as well be pretty! More of the yellow China silk.

It took a bit of fiddling to get the bodice to fit and I still ended up with a little gapping around the armhole. Maybe because I’m narrow in the shoulders… Next time I’ll change the shape of the the front of the armhole, but I’m pretty pleased with this little number.

The incredible painting that inspires me daily in my sewing space is by artist Sandy Henry. Thank you, Sandy!

More importantly, check out my new sewing space! I don’t have a separate sewing room anymore, which means I need to keep it neat. Oh dear.

My writing/sewing desk. Tucked in a nook in our living room.

But I love that when I look up from whatever I’m doing, I’m looking out over our Juliet balcony. I think Lula is happy here (should I rename her Juliet?).

My view.

So now that I have a fab new sewing space, my journey in fabric is up and running again. It’s amazing how hard it is to get started after a long break. Do you have that problem too? Two months with no sewing! Today I’m finishing up a floaty feather print dress in cotton lawn, fully lined with delicious white China silk… but that’s for next time.

I’m finding some inspiration in the OWOP challenge from Handmade Jane. One Week, One Pattern — the idea is to wear the same pattern every day for the week of September 6-12. OK that sounds pretty redundant so I’m guessing the real challenge is to see how many variations you can come up with. I’m game. Maybe. I’m thinking either a crisp simple shift in linens and cottons, with and without collar and sleeves or a loungey maxi in various knits. My fabric stash could handle either one… Sigh.

The sunsets here are just too amazing! What dress?!


12 thoughts on “Flora, meet Emery!

    1. Thank you! Actually I do have another room full of sewing stuff… Just can’t sew there because there’s no window! I get a little exercise this way, walking down the hall every time I need to iron something or get thread!

      1. Ah, well that makes more sense! I use our big dining table for cutting out and other sewing things, because its in a very well lit room. If only the best room in the house could be the complete sewing room…

  1. The view from your sewing space is divine! In times of needing inspiration, it’ll be nice to look outside and listen to the sound of the ocean as you sew!

    The dress looks great- and I totally understand about wanting to put in a side pocket in addition to a side zipper….! For this reason I haven’t tackled it myself! After reading your post I did a quickie search and found this:


    The pictures aren’t very good but I think the general idea of how to do it is there. I might actually try and make a sample myself– I’ve been spooked off the idea for too long and there’s actually quite a few different garments I want to make that would use this detail.

    1. Wow! Thanks! I will check it out! pockets are a necessity in life. There are many ways to incorporate them and I have a feeling that eventually you and I will try them all. 🙂

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