Dear Mrs Darling

Dear Mrs Darling,

I have always cherished you as the Home Ec teacher who taught me that marking notches as the right thing to do and that if the pattern envelope said ‘not suitable for obvious diagnals, plaids or 1-way stretch’ that that was the law and no matter how cool a similiar outfit looked on that Debbie Harry person, it was not to be done.  Your torch of sewing guidance never flickers in the sewers bordello.

But, I have to say something. All these years I have lived in dread of Vogue patterns because you said they were too hard to follow  and looked like crazy Europeans were making them!

Well, I must confess, I have been hoarding Vogue patterns for years and never sewing them. Just following Pattern Review and marvelling at other peoples Vogue achievements and stroking the envelopes by the light of the moon.

This weekend I wanted a blouse. So after shuffling thru the bins, I thought..’Should I? Dare I? Is it ok?’ and grabbed Vogue 1247:

and Mrs Darling- I loved it! First I felt shameful- I wondered if somewhere out there in a central Jersey nursing home you were there- an elderly woman in a very proper house dress with bound button holes screaming in horror……maybe just a little. Now I’m hooked. I plan a dress, a coat and maybe a vintage Vogue dress! If the camera had been playing nice with me, I’d have a picture here to show you……well, if it makes you feel any better, I still pin left handed just like you do.


Anne B –  class of ’88.

Ms Middletons Red Dress

Back view!

Isn’t this lovely? It’s classic and summery and lovely. I love the pleated front panel being so simple, but adding so much to a basic concept. So why don’t I have one too? Well, I have thumbed thru all my patterns, just sure that a basic princess seamed bodice lurked in there. I found a contender.  Trolling thru the big4 I was a little surprised at how hard it was to find this classic design. Another lesson: Never throw out old patterns! Styles always come back.

Add a little cap sleeve and we are in Pippaland.

Now I just need  to find what looks like a nubby, cottony something. Anyone have any nubby cottony something sources?

I am sure that this dres is the only thing seperating me from being Pippa Middletons exact clone. Look out cricket matches!  

Inspiration Time!

Well, it’s happened as I knew it would. I’m down to the handsewing and little details on my fabulous apple green floral dress and now, like a regular at an all you can eat Chinese buffet- I am sniffing around other things- ready to grab new tongs and go!

So here is the divine Dita Von Teese at the Coachella festival- this dress keeps coming back to my mind- I think the print combination is too much fun. But will it’s sleek shirtdress styling turn Ethel Mertzy on my little caboose? Possibly. I consulted an expert on such things.

The husband. I approach brandishing the page from the New Yorker.

‘Sweetie,  what do you think of this dress that Dita Von Teese is wearing? Should I make something similiar?’

‘I will tell you this once, and please always remember: if Dita Von Teese is wearing it, not only do I approve, I demand that you enter the sewingroom forthwith.’

Yes, I married a man who says ‘forthwith’, didn’t you?  Poor guy, I know he is picturing more ‘Dita’s Opium Den Tour 2011’ than the music festival in a mud field, but hey, I will take to the sewingroom.

I’ll report back when this idea gets a little more formed. I’m thinking maybe 3 prints- possibly the M’Liss fabrics from Hancock Fabric. Appropriate I think- Dita is a dachsie loving gal and so is Ms Rawley. I think the three of us should get a cottage in the Hamptons this season. I’ll bring the magazines and twizzlers.

Perhaps this little number as  one:

What’cha think?

photo credits: UK Daily mail