Sew Colette: A finished Peony

Peony looks like such an easy dress to sew, doesn’t it?

Pattern: Colette Patterns‘ Peony
Time taken: About a month, give or take
Fabric: Dyed cotton fabric plus some scraps for the facings
Details: Velvet ricrac

As other sewists taking part in this round of Sew Colette have found, Peony is not as easy as it seems. Despite making a muslin and sewing with extra-large seam allowances, I’ve ended up with a bodice which isn’t as comfortable as I’d like it yet has some unfortunate sagging around the neckline. So, while I can barely lift my arms (see below), the top part still looks as though it’s just a bit too big.

Hence I found myself nervously tugging at the bodice as I sweated profusely in the Scott Room at the Guardian’s offices – and it wasn’t just because I was up for an award. (I’d also been stuck on the Tube for half an hour AND had to run from work to catch my train… sweaty is probably an understatement)

But it’s funny how you can forget absolutely all of this when Charlie Stayt off of BBC Breakfast announces you as the Guardian’s Digital Student Journalist of the Year. It’s been a bit more than a week now, but I still can’t quite believe it happened!

I swear, the almighty roar my buddy Tom (pictured above) gave when the winner was announced is STILL ringing in my ear. Other souvniers include a lovely sign Tom acquired, which he managed to lug into the bar for the after party before he handed it to me to make its way back to Guildford. I got some funny looks on the last train home from those not snoozin’ from Thursday night debauchery.

All said, it’s hard to write off a dress with such obvious problems when it has that kind of memory AS WELL AS velvet ric rac attached to it. Sweatiness be damned!

On the sewing front, I really would like to get these terrible fitting issues sorted. Inspired by Sarah’s Peony, I was rather hoping to make a green lace version in time for Christmas. Does anyone have any suggestions what I could do to improve the fit?

Those of you who have entered the giveaway… the winners will be announced later this week! I still need to get one part of the package, so keep your eyes peeled for that…

Oh, and on a final note. THANK YOU for being lovely readers. I wouldn’t have won this award without you!

12 thoughts on “Sew Colette: A finished Peony

  1. Vicki Kate says:

    I am so pleased you won the award! Definitely deserved, your tweeting that evening made me laugh so much!
    The Peony looks great and as you say, too many memories now – the ricrac looks fabulous, I loved the sleek peak you gave a while ago!

  2. Megan says:

    Congratulations! For both the award and finally finishing the dress. Can I just say, when I first saw the picture of your friend Tom I thought he was Arthur Darvill from Doctor Who… whoops!

  3. oonaballoona says:

    congratulations m’lady!!!

    that pic of you next to the poster is priceless.. looks like you have three legs :)). i’m scared of the peony after so many strugglesome posts, but it does look cute as hell on you.

    • Elena Cresci says:

      That is EXACTLY the look I was going for 😉 three-legged chic.

      Thank you! I think it’s just one which really needs some serious muslin action to pull it off. Am determined to try again and sort the bodice fitting issues 🙂

  4. gingermakes says:

    Wow, congrats! What a great achievement! I’m glad you guys celebrated hardcore!

    Are your armscyes too low? Maybe that’s what’s limiting your arm movement? Just a stab in the dark…

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