Sunday, August 2, 2009

Green with Envy

A while ago I made this little dress.

And its story is as cute as it is. So listen up . . .

I used to work at a coffee shop (the one that closed down) with a girl named Kati. We had both worked there for a couple of years, when her boyfriend Ben (needing some extra money) started to work there as well. I actually made a wedding dress for his sister almost two years ago, when he was just an acquaintance. He saw what a good job I did on his sister's dress, and knew that Kati liked my designs, so he asked me to make something for her, but he also wanted it to be a surprise.

How am I going to surprise this girl when I need to measure and fit her? So I came up with a plan that involved a couple other girls that worked at the coffee shop, and a little bit of trickery.

I told Kati that since I was going to start selling on Etsy, and that I was going to do everything custom sized, that I would need some practice fitting people. Well not really practice fitting, but more like reassurance that if I made something according to measurements that when the garment was tried on, it would fit. Anyway, one day at work, I measured her, and two other girls (to help with the lie), and then came up with some designs that I made muslin samples of, so they could try on.

Kati and one of the other girls I measured (Erica), came to my studio one day so I could "practice." These two girls were almost the same exact size, which actually worked to my advantage. I had two different bodices for them to try on. Kati's was a simple sleeveless top with a wide neck band. My idea for that was to make it out of gingham, with the neck band cut on the bias, with a fuller skirt, and a belt that would also be cut on the bias. The one I made for Erica to try on was a spaghetti strap top with a sweetheart neckline, that would fit at the waist, with the same type of full skirt and belt. Both fit each girl very well (which was, in fact, reassuring). Kati, seeing Erica's sweetheart neckline, mentioned that she loved that neckline. So Kati tried the bodice originally intended for Erica, which was originally intended to just help fool Kati, and it fit her so well, and looked so good on her, that I decided to scratch my original idea. Only now I had to come up with a different fabric choice. Which also worked out, because Ben said she already had so much gingham and that she liked green. I am not too fond of green gingham myself (I really only like yellow or black). So it was back to the drawing board.

I had the design of the dress figured out, it fit her perfectly, and I knew that Ben wanted the dress to be green. So I looked online and found all the green fabrics that I liked, emailed them to Ben, and from my choices, he picked the green apples. (Yes! That was my favorite.)

So I made the dress (just in time for their vacation), secretly met with Ben at an undisclosed place and time, and he surprised her with it. Yeah! She was happy, Ben was happy, I was happy, but a little jealous. I wanted an apple dress too. It is so cute! But it is more special since it is one of a kind. I'm sure I'll manage without.

Soon after that dress, I got busy making these shorts for and old friend of mine:

More green. The color was her choice, of course. But making these two things got me thinking that I needed something green. So I made this for me:

I found this fabric at Joann's. They also have red, blue, and black, so I was thinking that I could sell this design and offer it in those various colors. I am not sure about this fabric though. I didn't wash the fabric before I made the dress (tsk, tsk, you should always pre-treat your fabric), and now the green is rubbing off onto the belt. The fabric is kinda cheap, and I am worried about it fading easily. Before I decide to post this for sale, I'll have to wash the dress and see the amount of fading, and also see if it is still bleeding onto my belt. I would also add straps before posting this for sale. We'll see about this one.


EdgyK said...

Fun story, thanks for all the photos.

Jodi said...

Oh I love those shorts! I think I will have to make myself some high waisted shorts once it gets a bit warmer.