Completed Project: The Gertie Shirtwaist dress – v2!
Earlier this year, unbeknownst to my co-blogger Julia (aka Aileen), I decided to make myself a purple gingham shirtwaist dress (pictured below). At around the same time, I offered to make a dress for Aileen for her birthday. The phrase ‘great minds think alike’ springs to mind, because she asked for none other than the Gertie Shirtwaist dress in red gingham!!! Of course, I was happy to oblige, and making my own version first gave me the opportunity to really get to grips with the construction of the dress and the techniques used.
Once I had finished my dress, I made a toile of Aileen’s dress and sent it to her in the post, hoping and praying there wouldn’t need to be too many alterations! She has already made a couple of things from Gertie’s book though (the pencil skirt, the wiggle dress and the sundress) and hadn’t had any fitting problems with those, and as luck would have it, she was happy with the toile! Phew!
It took me quite a while to finish this dress, and I kept on randomly making other things at the same time. Usually, I complete one project at a time, and even though I’ve been sewing since 2009, I only have one unfinished project! I got there in the end though, and not only was I very pleased with the results, but Aileen was too!
I actually am a bit jealous as I think I prefer the red gingham to the purple! Anyway, on to the photos…
I put my multi-tiered petticoat underneath the dress for these photos. I think it makes the shirtdress look a bit more dressy, and of course it gives it a nice shape on the dummy (who is called Delilah).
Excuse the state of my sewing room! Now for some detail shots:
The sleeves turned out better on Aileen’s version than they did on mine!
The back yoke went slightly off grain. I hope no one noticed, but feel obliged to point it out!
Bound buttonholes? NEVER AGAIN!
I tried to match the fabric for the bound buttonholes. I’m pretty pleased really. They are not absolute perfection, but they’re good enough for me to show you!
I used white buttons for my own purple gingham dress, but it just had to be red for Aileen’s dress. These are Vogue buttons from Hobbycraft. They are very sweet.
I think I did quite a good job of matching the gingham at the waistline!
The hem on this dress went crazy! It did this on my purple version too. I think all the handling of the dress that occurs when you’re sewing the bound buttonholes pulls the fabric out of shape a bit. To even it out, I had to chop off over three inches at some points, and at other points just a tiny amount!
Anyway, here’s the birthday girl wearing her new dress:
And one last photo of us both (my dress is one I made last year):