Sew Melbourne Garden Party 2018

IMG_0588The second annual Sew Melbourne garden party was held recently at the Melbourne Botanical Gardens on a day that complimented the frocks and frivolities. The sun shone, the weather was quite temperate and the music most fitting.

For the first time in what feels like forever, I had a very clear idea of what I wanted to create to wear. In fact, the idea (thank you Pinterest, unable to acknowledge photo further due to lack of links) had been sitting with me for some time. I even had the perfect linen purchased from The Drapery in my stash. My first thought was do I embroider or screen print.  Screen printing clearly won as the event date crept closer and I was yet to cut the fabric. Given that it took two years from Pinning the dress and 2 weeks to design and construct I think we call all see why this is a hobby and not a commercial enterprise. IMG_0702

I’m not known for my arty skills but when I’m inspired by an image I can usually come up with an interpretation that sits well with me. The dress pattern was the Kim dress bodice by ByHandLondon and their Flora skirt. The screen print patterns were ones I had already created for previous projects, including a fern leave, orchid and a wonderful branch of leaves of a neighbouring tree. I just needed to replicate the red flowers which were essentially well placed skewed elliptical shapes. I was happy with the colours I mixed, but never ask me to replicate them. Except the bronze. The bronze came out of the jar as is. I can replicate the bronze.IMG_0427

I took the extra step of tracing the stencils and colouring them in as I was bored one morning and couldn’t find anything to entertain me that didn’t involve house work. Plus I was waiting for someone to fix my beast of an oven who was having conniptions (all sorted now without having to add a 900mm stainless steel cooking monster to landfill. Phew!). This made pattern placement and perspective incredibly easy and a method I will definitely employ again. IMG_0428

So very happy with the way the dress came together, and although going up a size in the bodice there really wasn’t too much room for cake to be had. (what genetic freak of nature grows bewbs at 42???) Speaking of which though, you must peruse this Gin and Tonic cake recipe that was shared on the day. So. Much. Delicious.BA

The afternoon was lovely. Being with one’s tribe is all sorts of wonderful. In addition to the sewing tribe there was a subsection of curly girl seamstresses as well. #splintergroupscanbeawesome.IMG_0608

I didn’t get too many photo’s on the day that had me looking other than a turtle trying to get its neck back into its shell so we took some more pic’s at the Geelong Botanical Gardens over Easter. garden3

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Sew Melbourne Garden Party

Sew Melbourne Garden Party

What a wonderful garden party. A spectacular lady garden sewing party if you will.

The Sew Melbourne Garden Party was planned through the collaboration of a bevy of gorgeous ladies, @craftyjane, @liblib and @abbythingsforboys. They coordinated a picnic within the Kings Domain at the Botanical on a perfect Autumn afternoon for the all inclusive sewing community.  

A delightful afternoon was had, lounging under the trees in the dappled sunlight, nibbling on sweet treats and listening to the string quartet (who did an amazing thing by outplaying the electronica festival next door).

We were quite the curiosity to those taking a stroll around the grounds. 

Leah and I met during a blogging course many moons ago at Blog with Pip, and now here we are playing ladies in the gardens!

I had decided the previous day that I wouldn’t be able to make it due to insomnia making it impossible for me to speak, let alone think, however I was blessed with 6 hours of snooze time. Bruce offered to chaperone me to and from the gardens so I packed a little hamper and made my way to the party.

I wore the Bardot dress by Simple Sew Patterns, although I’m struggling to find where I purchased the PDF. I’d seen this pattern some time ago, and when I purchased this amazing linen from The Drapery in South Australia that I knew they were destined for one another.

The dress was very straight forward. The neckline was what initially drew me to the pattern and when I sit still, the neckline sits perfect and still, but when I move it doesn’t quite stay in place. I’m thinking two small darts at the back neckline should rectify this issue.

The only adjustment I made to the pattern was to lengthen the bodice by 2.5cm which was just the right amount.

When the actual sewing had been completed I thought it needed a little lift so I hand stitched the ribbon around the hemline (approximately 2 hours work) so I felt more of a sense of accomplishment given the dress had taken so little time. 

I also purchased these amazing seamed stockings from What Katie Did. How have I not worn them before? I found them so comfortable particularly on a hot day. I most likely flashed them more than was necessary, but don’t fret, the Liberty knickers also went on display just for a second. 

I made my name badge from vintage liberty which took three attempts to get right. The first was too messy, the second looked as though my name was Pups but the third turned out perfectly. It’s now pinned to one of my curtains in the sewing atelier.

A lovely day was had by all. I was excited to finally be able to attend a sewing soiree since I’ve had to miss several due to illness. And so nice to put names and faces to Instagram names. Although I did find myself referring to people by their IG names because it was easier to remember. I have such fog brain and word salad that I was lucky to get out of the house that day. If you want to see more captures of our wonderful afternoon, search for #sewmelbournegp

That is about as saucy as I get yet I still get the feeling I look more demure than anything else. A friend once told me that even when I attempt to dress myself as a lady of the night I still looked ridiculously wholesome and like I’m about to attend church.

Thank you Libby, Jane and Abby for planning such a special event.
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Photos by Bruce and also Lady Garden Party  attendees. Fabric purchased from The Drapery. Aged ribbon purchased from Lilly Pond. Stockings purchased from What Katie Did. Shoes purchased from American Duchess. Flower crown by Lilly and Lace. Garden party held at the Kings Domain in the Melbourne Botanical Gardens.