I’ve Come A Long Way


Below was my very first attempt at making my own clothing from scratch. I made it back in early 2009 while pregnant with Penelope. I started with simplicity pattern #3673 and added sleeves & a pleated skirt and frantically whipped it up late Saturday night before heading off to church.

I’ve learned a lot about construction & finishing hems since I made this dress. After this was a success, I made another one with buttons & legit button holes using some free fabric I scrounged. It was curtain fabric; aka “Sound of Music” fabric. I wore that a couple of times, but never photographed it.

I swapped both dresses with Sarah & she’s worn both of them, which just makes my day. I love how she wore my first dress: backwards. I had made the dress button up in the back, but I love how Sarah showcased the buttons in front. They really are cool. Doesn’t she have the coolest shoes ever?

Also, I love how Sarah wore the “Sound of Music” version with Western boots. Aren’t those babies killer? Sarah’s style just kills me some times.

On a side note, it’s so fun to look back at our old furniture (sold that chair back in SF) and our old apartment through my sewing documentation. I really wish that chair hadn’t been as broken as it was. It’s got killer bones. Also, the top photo was taken before I ever dreamed I’d own a DSLR. It just shows what you can do with a little natural light & photoshop.

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    1. Both dresses are really great looking and I agree that she has some awesome shoes!! I can’t believe that was your first attempt at sewing. My first attempt was decidedly less good.

    2. Miranda says:

      I love both dresses. And agree it’s fun to look back at past projects as see what development has taken place through the years. (and I love your chair–I posted today about my Good Bones Chair- funny how “bones” seems the correct description?!) (and- I just found out you are my friend Polly’s sister in law! Small world.)

    3. Wow, you made that adorable dress in a night? Totally gives me hope that in 2 years I will be, um, AMAZING at sewing. Which is awesome since after going thrifting a few times this summer and beginning to sew this year I now see no point in spending money on new clothes.

    4. Michelle says:

      After being subject to looking like an amish girl for the first 10 years of my life (My dear Mother insisted on making ALL out clothes, including our cloth diapers. I must note that my Mother is from the country and had zero style. At all.) I was terrified of homemade clothing until recently.

      I’m determined to update a cute Tshirt I have laying around.. baby steps!

    5. Megan Walter says:

      the dress turned out beautiful! what a unique style. love it.
      and your blog design is gorgeous too, by the way! :)


    6. SarahJane says:

      OH Melissa. I am so lucky to don your dresses. Seriously. Love them both, and have major respect for your ridiculous talent for designing and sewing. I got a TON of compliments on that floral number. So thankful to be the recycled dress beneficiary.

    7. Bmerry says:

      i do still love the short hair… I won’t get a hair cut… I won’t get a hair cut…

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