No New Dresses
Thursday, July 17, 2008

So, I went to an SCA event a couple months ago, and when I started to get ready, I realized that my garb was in rather poor condition.  Not that surprising, really; I only have 2 dresses, and they're both at least 10 years old.  So, I figured that for the Lyondemere Anniversary, I'd make a new dress.

I have a nice pattern, and I bought some fabric, but was unable to find the contrasting fabric and some of the trim I needed.  I began to realize that making the dress is not nearly as difficult as finding the materials.  Today, that fact proved true once again.

Dressmaking was a lot lower on my list of priorities than a number of things, including my recent trip to Colorado.  So it wasn't until today that I finally addressed myself to the task.  The event is this Saturday, and tomorrow is booked, so today was my only day to work on it.

The pattern I had was rather complicated, and as I said, I didn't have all the materials.  Those were just two of a number of reasons that I chose to go with a simpler pattern.  Unfortunately, that availed for nought.

I chose a pattern from a book I have.  When I did the calculations, it turned out that the pattern, as written, would require 84-inch width fabric!  Not likely to find, considering most fabrics come 42 to 44 inches in width.  I calculated how much yardage would be required if I modified the pattern to fit on 44" cloth, and determined that I would need 23 yards.  I'm so not going to be able to afford that!  Most commercial patterns give yardage for 44" and also 60" fabric.  So, I adjusted the pattern to fit on 60" cloth.  That brought the quantity down to 10 yards, which might be manageable if I could find an inexpensive fabric.

I went to the nearest JoAnn's Superstore.  This probably was my main mistake, but I don't really know where else to go.  When you start to consider how many variables are involved... fabric type, width, color, quantity, and price... you quickly realize that finding what you want borders on a small miracle.  I did see one nice fabric in an acceptable color, but it was too narrow (41"), and there wasn't enough of it on the bolt.  The home decor section had fabrics that were 54" wide, but nothing with an acceptable fiber, and the color choices were awful... not to mention that the prices were too high for me to buy the quantity I needed.

So, what can you do?

Scrap the project.

Leave a comment

Thanks! I'll look into some of those options. 
Posted by Carolyn on Thursday, January 1, 2009
I am so sorry that u had such a time with this project. A friend pointed out that bed sheets can be affordable fabric. I have picked up a ton of fabric at yard sales and salvation armies for garbing. Hobby Lobby also has a discount trim area...I've gotten huge rolls of beautiful trim for $7-15, it usually sells for that per foot. lol Hope this helps!
Posted by Wilhelmina on Tuesday, December 30, 2008
As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you.
— 1 Samuel 12:23