Inside of Kim: oh the shame of it

Hello all,

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I finished my Kim Sewalong a little bit behind schedule but still on time for my niece’s wedding on the 11th April.  She is having a very colourful wedding in Peckham and I thought this fabric would be perfect for a fun dress – here I must confess – the inspiration came from Dolly Clackett whose dress I have completely copied – please forgive me and thanks SO much for being such a huge source of inspiration to me during my first year of sewing.  There, I’ve got that out of the way right at the beginning of the post so now I can give you the deets.

I am writing this post as my contribution to the Monthly Stitch Collective and the theme for March is Inside Out.  Well, the insides of this frock will probably make you sigh with disbelief.  So far, every dress I have made has had shedloads of surplus fabric so instead of the three metres I should have got, I went for two.  Big mistake.  The skirt is supposed to have all three metres in it so mine is nowhere near as swishy as it should be.

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The bodice is lined and as I didn’t have the full amount of fabric (Grrrr), I couldn’t get the lining out of the same fabric. As I had already started cutting out and just wanted to get on to sewing I searched my stash – which is nowhere near as abundant as some I  have seen.  The only fabric I had which was not printed or not cotton was some gorgeous broderie anglaise I had bought from Sew Over it and cost half as much again as the dress fabric itself.

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It looks very pretty anyway.  If you are a regular reader you will know I have a fear of my overlocker, which came threaded with black.  I decided I would be bold and use it to finish my seams …. can you see where this is going?

imageI promise I won’t do this again.  I have now had a private lesson and been shown how to change my threads – although I haven’t yet done it by myself. If you look very carefully at the picture of the bodice you can see just see the darkness of the thread peeping through – Oh I am a wally. Luckily it’s on the inside so only I know.  The bodice top was a challenge for me – I have never done that thread the fabric through the shoulders thing before – I didn’t think it would ever go through and when it did, the fabric was so creased it looked like a rag.  Here is a picture mid procedure – looks rude doesn’t it?

imageI also learned a new technique for gathering and I have to say, it has produced the best results so far; you prepare the gathers by hand-sewing two rows of running stitch at the same time.

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Although I am please with the overall outcome, there are a few things I regret – of course, there are. The black overlocking and the fact that I didn’t handstitch the hem.  On the plus side my invisible zip insertion is improving and if I can get my waist seams to line up it would be moving towards perfect.

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So all in all a reasonable outcome. The fabric is called Flaming Boarder and I bought it from Fancy Moon; the dress pattern (which I would highly recommend) is By Hand London’s Kim – but don’t skimp on the fabric.

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imageI thought you might like a little close up of my shoes.  I have become obsessed with Swedish clogs – I bought two pairs at the end of the summer in the sale which I hadn’t had chance to wear but now that I have and know exactly how comfortable they are, I have bought another …. sssshhhh, don’t tell Mr CK this ….. three pairs.

So, the clocks have gone back, Spring is officially here and it is the first day of my two week Easter break – Happy Days!

Toodle pip,

Clarinda x

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15 thoughts on “Inside of Kim: oh the shame of it

  1. I don’t know what you say but the inside of the dress in great and it may be due to my bad eye sight but I don’t see the black thread in the lining. I use the same trick to rethread the overlocker and it works 🙂 but I mostly have on it blue and red thread and I don’t feel ashamed to say that I do overlock in that combination if I can get away with it. I think the dress looks great, as for the invisible zipper you have done a better job that what I usually manage to achieve. I can’t remember where I stole this from but interfacing the part of the fabric where the zipper goes, helps it from not moving, while sewing. I use this trick as well. The colour is so happy and screams spring!! Well done!

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  2. Super cute dress! And another serger tip: light gray thread goes with almost anything. It’s what I always keep my serger threaded with, and I very rarely have to change it. Others may be more particular about color matching of course, but it works well for me! 🙂

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  3. such a cute dress and the shoes are perfect with it. I am always happy when I can do a few sewing projects in the same serger thread colouir and sometimes rearrange my plans so I don’t have to do it so often!

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  4. I second (third) what these ladies said. you must try tying the new thread onto the already threaded looper thread! Also 3 rows of machine basting always gives me great gathering and is much faster than hand sewing. Love the dress and the shoes! And i love broderie anglaise as lining.

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  5. Well done, the dress looks great, in spite of 🙂
    But the main reason I wanted to comment was to share a little trick re threading the ovelocker (which I adore and could never live without). I don’t know what the back story is (so apologies if this is completely irrelevant), but if you are not changing the thread because you are worried about having to rethread it, try this trick. Cut the lower and upper looper threads long enough to be able to knot them to the new colour. Then lift the presser foot and gently pull the chained threads until the new colour comes out the other side. Then take out the needle thread(s) and thread the needle(s) as per usual (I assume that is not an issue). Just make sure it goes through the tension dials properly. Pull a little bit on the thread below the tension dials to see if it has any resistance to make sure. This works like a charm on my Brother, and my teacher used to do it all the time on Janome ones too. Hope it helps and sorry again if it’s irrelevant.

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  6. Don’t feel too bad about the dress’s inside, you “made it work!! as Tim Gunn famously says. Your dress is adorable! I love the border print and the inside lining of the bodice is actually really cute. Have no fear changing your serger thread. I do it for every garment. I use the tie on method for the upper and lower loopers and then run it through. Rethread the the needles last. The needle or needles have to be threaded last or you won’t get the chain. Lastly, check that your thread is actually in the tension discs and not floating on top. Give them a little tug. 🙂

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