Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Chloe Dress by Victory Patterns

Hello long-lost bloggy friends! My goodness, can you believe it's been over three months since my last post. Three months...where did that go? Craziness, I tell you. In fact, it's been so long that I had to reset the password to my blogger account today because I could no longer remember what it was. (Remembering passwords is not a strength of mine.)

Things have been crazy, crazy busy around these 'ere parts which explains my long absence from blogging. CRAZY BUSY FACT #1 - Three months ago, I returned to full-time work after eight years of working part-time. CRAZY BUSY FACT #2 - I resigned from state education and moved to the private sector so had to familiarise myself with a new workplace and learn a new education system. CRAZY BUSY FACT #3 -  I'm teaching a year level I've never taught before.  CRAZY BUSY FACT #4 - I went through the emotional drain of putting my youngest child into full-time kindy. (Sure, he's almost 5, but that doesn't make it any easier.) Oh, and if that doesn't sound like a big enough change.......here comes CRAZY BUSY FACT #5 - I'm planning a major household renovation. Sewing? What sewing!

Funnily enough, when I looked over my blog today, the outfit I'm wearing in my most recent post, is actually the outfit I wore to my job interview over three months ago. I must have gotten Paul to photograph me on the morning of my interview. I looked so relaxed and carefree... I think I'm looking a little more weary these days. Thank god for concealer!

Well, even though I haven't kept on top of my own sewing and blogging, I've successfully kept on top of reading all about yours. My blogroll has provided me with a much-needed sanctuary when I've been too weary to head to the staffroom at lunchtime and mingle with my new colleagues. Meeting and getting to know new people and repeating my story over and over again is not a break. Instead, I often chose to sit in the peace and quiet of my empty classroom and secretly live out my sewing fantasies through all your wonderful creations. It was a welcome break from constantly talking, thinking and doing. I think peppermint tea and my blogroll got me through the tough first three months. So thank you. 

On to sewing....

I do have a number of catch-up posts to do of garments I made prior to starting my job. I'll have to schedule in a photography session with Paul this week before holidays end. I remember my sister telling me years ago that Ashton Kutcher set up a bar in Demi's walk-in-wardrobe so that he could sit back, chill and have a few drinks while Demi asked him to critique all her outfits in a 'does my butt look big in this?' style. I think I may have to channel something like that, but I'll ditch the bar and the wardrobe and replace it with a beer, cool music and the back verandah.

Sewing inventory since starting my new job: dress x 1, long sleeve knit top x1, unfinished pants x1, unfinished skirt x 1, unfinished shorts x1, unfinished jacket x1. Are you starting to see a pattern here?

Chloe Dress - Victory Patterns

This week, I made the Chloe dress by Victory Patterns. I wore it out on a lunch date with my husband today and have to say, I kinda love it. It was super comfortable and I think it suits my silhouette well. Best of all, it can be worn as either a tunic top over jeans in winter or by itself as a dress when things warm up. It also lends itself to a ton of accessories options, which I love.

I sewed the Chloe dress using a lovely piece of linen I bought from Tessuti, Melbourne around Christmas time. I also decided to embrace the 'clashing prints' fashion trend from last season and added piping down the front/side front seams, sleeve bindings and pocket flaps using a contrasting linen print from The Fabric Store, Melbourne. I wasn't sure how the whole 'clashing print' thing would go, but I have to say, I love how it turned out. I don't think the dress would look anywhere near as groovy, if I'd used a matching contrast. I also added fabric-covered buttons to the pocket flaps using the flowers featured on the fabric from the shell of the dress. 

From memory, the only alterations I made were to alter the shoulder seams to better fit my square shoulders and to remove some fabric that was pooling in the front sleeve section. Other than that, I think it was a pretty easy fit. I could always go and check my toile to confirm these alterations, but you have to understand they are in a completely different room to where I am currently sitting. Weary much? 

Styled with: Elk sandals, Elk necklace, Kangaroo leather cuff, Jag slim fit jeans

There photos were taken today at Palm Cove Beach. It was a beautiful winter's day, but boy was it blowing a gale! 


  1. Fabulous dress, the contrast fabrics really do look great together.

    I returned to full-time teaching this year, and while I haven't had the experience of having to meet new colleagues and children, I understand the challenges of trying to fit in some sewing while doing everything else that needs doing with the house and the kids.

  2. Those contrast details are very cute. Great styling! I'm so jealous that you necklace is still blue...perhaps I will have to buy myself another. It is blowing a gale here too..driving me crazy!

    How do you like the Victory patterns? Will you be buying more? The sleeve on that dress looks very climate appropriate.

  3. Beautiful dress! I agree that the contrasting contrast (ha!) looks great. Hopefully all the craziness subsides into a routine and you get to relax a bit.

  4. Oh I've been wondering where you've been! I'm so pleased you are back, even if just for a short while during holidays. Congrats on the new job and I totally understand your absence because of it. I work only 4 days and feel totally out of control most of the time. I love this new dress and think the constrast was def a good choice to make. Good luck for the coming term - I hope it flies by... in a good way, not a going nuts way!

  5. Wow, you have been busy! When I saw this post pop up in my reader I instantly thought how long it had been since you were last around these parts. I sneak peaks at blogs during lunch breaks when I need some me-time too :) Cute dress though - I love how you alwaysw pick fabrics I would pick, and they suit you so well! I hope you've been settling into the new job and changes at home... :)

  6. I'm so glad you're back blogging Bernice! I love this dress - I've just put it on my to-buy list. And I really love that fabric - it is fantastic.

  7. Welcome back Bernice :) Love the dress.

  8. I've been admiring this pattern for a while. It's very cute and I think you're right; it does suit you.

    Good luck on adjusting to your new schedule!

  9. I was wondering about you the other day! Glad you are back. I love the 'clashing contrast.' I definitely think it makes the dress totally groovy. I'm going back to work in August and I'm dreading what it will do to my (minimal) sewing time, too.

  10. I've missed you and your lovely garments! I love the print mixing and this pattern.

  11. Welcome back! Gorgeous dress and good luck finding sewing time amongst that craziness.

  12. Oh I was wondering what had happened! I must have missed this post before... good luck with the new job! The new dress is very groovy :)