Sunday, March 8, 2015

First Outfit for FairyLand's Sionna Fomhar

No, she hasn't arrived yet.  Don't I wish!  A little less than three months have passed since I ordered Sionna, and I expect that FairyLand's observance of the Christmas and Lunar New Year holidays will push her arrival date sometime into April at the earliest.  That being said, Saturday is the doll club's St. Patrick's Day meet-up and I need something green.  I've had the fabric and pattern all ready to go for a couple of months at least.  I figured now is as good a time as any to sew the outfit.  Mirwen is the same size, so she is the lucky girl who will wear it to the meet-up.
Patterns and fabrics

I am using a mix of patterns:  Gracefaerie's #16 The Corset for the top; Adams-Harris Pattern Company's Sweet Jane for the skirt; the sleeves are of my own devising.  My main fabric is a lightweight suede-like fabric in a color I can't begin to describe.  (It's hard to photograph, too.)  Grayish olive?  Dark dusty sage?  Complicating matters is the print.  Depending on the light it is either gold, bronze or copper.  It appears to be a screen print done in metallic paint.  It shines!  Gorgeous.
Pattern pieces basted together so they won't shift in the machine

After considering a half-dozen shiny gold fabrics, I paired the main fabric with a pale gold netting with a bit of sparkle to it.  This is the part of the underskirt that shows.  The part that doesn't show is a cotton/poly blend in tan.  The sleeves, which I haven't cut out yet, will be made of the main fabric with the gold netting showing at the bottom.  The corset will fasten by means of a ribbon threaded through the smaller openings in a piece of brown lace trim.
Completed skirt with pattern for fringe.

The main fabric has wonderful draping ability.  It is super lightweight.  And it's a bear to sew.  No matter what size needle I put in my sewing machine, piercing the fabric requires huge effort.  Whatever this stuff is made of, my machine chews it up.  At one point it pulled the needle right out of the needle clamp.  After it created a gargantuan knot of thread under the seam I was attempting to sew, I decided to complete the outfit by hand.  It's taking longer, but at least I don't have to unravel gnarly knots.
Corset and lining halves ready to assemble

When making a second or third outfit from one pattern, I like to make changes so that I am not merely turning out copies.  Instead of adding lace trim to the bottom of the top skirt, I cut a strip of the main fabric and attached it to the skirt, then cut it into a fringe with sharp scissors.  I made myself a pattern so as not to make random cuts.  The final fringe may look random, but it actually consists of five pattern repeats.
Almost there.  I need to secure the lace and close the bottom hem.

Because I didn't finish sewing, I will add photos later of Mirwen wearing the outfit.  (Hopefully tomorrow.)  The skirt still needs two snap sets.  One-half of the corset needs to be joined to its lining, turned and ironed.  Then the corset needs hooks and eyes for the back, as well as a ribbon threaded through the lace trim on the front.  And I need to cut out and sew the two sleeves.  Looks like I'll be burning the midnight oil.


  1. I love that fabric! Sometimes the cutest metallics seem to have a sort of coating that machine needles hate, and hand-sewing is the answer. The trim on that looks so good!

    1. I'm sure you're right about the coating, because I only ran into difficulties in places where the needle had to sew through the print. The plain areas were easy-peasy.