Some of the WSBN (Wellington Sewing Bloggers Network) decided (a while ago I think!) that we should go to Staglands wearing a Deer and Doe garment that we had made. Staglands, Deer and Doe – this totally goes together. Below, I’m wearing a Deer and Doe Bleuet feeding some doe. Win.
Staglands is a cross between a wildlife reserve, a zoo, a petting zoo, and beautiful gardens. There were so many awesome animals and they were really friendly. Some were a little too friendly and really wanted some food.. lucky me, I got jumped on by a goat, which gave my bruises on my legs.
It wasn’t a hard choice for me to make the Bleuet as the girls that told me about Staglands day showed me the pattern they were making and I couldn’t say no! The bleuet is a wonderful dress, so many awesome things about it – a collar, puff sleeves, buttons, and princess seams. Oh AND A BOW!
I was in love.
Making it however, was not so easy. I got stuck on so many things in the instructions – which of course didn’t surprise me because I have a hard enough time following other peoples patterns anyway. So I had pretty much the entire dress made (as much as I could) before I realised that the patterns NEVER tells you to sew up the shoulder seams. I wasn’t even the one that realised it, my sister did when I was trying to fit it haha without shoulder seams – smart!
But thats ok cause I touched a deer antlers and they are SO SOFT. Like velvet.
Since my sister Kat came along, so did her man and their toddler who was squirming to get away from the sheep. The sheep that can’t see, right? Cause the horns. Crazy design.
Right, so about the actual dress !
The fabric is pretty quilting cotton from Arthur Toye fabric store in Wellington, 4 days before it closed down *cries*. My first and only visit to that amazing store.
Kat thought I should do piping down the princess seams, which I really wanted to do because it meant learning to make bias binding and then making the piping, what a novelty! So I stuck into doing that first thing and I used a bright pink polyester that we had found the weekend before at the SPCA open day in Wellington which belongs to the back of a duvet cover costing us $1.
The buttons I found in my stash, after about 2 hours of um-ing and ah-ing with my flatmate to just narrow it down to “think it over” for a couple days following that. I only used 10 buttons because that was all I had of that colour !
Bias binding is incredibly easy to make and I followed instructions from Kat as I was going. Unfortunately I don’t have any of the pictures, I can’t find them 😦 but I will try to describe what I did!!
First cut the fabric into a square.
Next is to cut a bit off one side in a triangle shape (sorry but I can’t remember how big) this is to sew on the other side so instead of a square it now looks like a parallelogram.
Now measure (I think we did 5cm) parallel lines from on side to the other following the slant of the sides of the parallelogram.
The next bit is the tricky bit and I don’t even know if the above stuff makes sense enough for this bit to even try to make sense! So we want to sew the top and the bottom of the parallelogram together to make a cylinder type thing and match up the lines. To do this pin the top and bottom together right sides together but try to match the lines 1/4 inch below the edge of the fabric so that they will be matched up on the seam line when turning the fabric out.
After sewing that you can now cut along the lines and will have a long strip of fabric.
Press in half.
Yay bias binding complete (if you could follow those instructions). I was going to link to Kat’s page because I think she has a tutorial on how to make bias binding, but I couldn’t find it so Kat please comment below !!
With the bias binding, it is super easy to make piping, just use a zipper foot and as you sew push the piping in towards the pressed edge as far as possible.
The fun parts about making this dress is that I got to learn things and do things I have never done before. Including the bias binding, piping, collar, bow, hem facing (picture above, which I am SO proud of), and gathered sleeves, EEP gathered sleeves, I still think they are waaay too girly with all the pink going on. It’s a little bit of a love/hate relationship with them, but they are still attached so I think the love is winning!
I got to hold a bunny.
4 of us made the same dress, but they still all look so different ! Looking fabulous girls !