I’m competing in the Super Online Sewing Match II hosted by Sew Mama Sew and I have made it to Round Four. In between each round the contestants are asked to answer a sewing related question. For Round Four, the question is, “What is the best thing You’ve ever sewn?” Without any hesitation I’m going to say that the dress I made to meet Tim Gunn is definitely the “BEST”!
You can imagine that I was more than excited to meet Tim and listen to him speak so personally about his life, his experiences on Project Runway, and about his new book, “Tim Gunn: the Natty Professor”.
Tim Gunn, is the mentor and advisor to the designers on Project Runway. These designers go through grueling fashion design challenges each week. The outcome of the show is to see who will go to Fashion Week and who will earn some very awesome prizes to help them jump-start their career. Tim explained that it isn’t easy to complete the challenges in the time frame of the show. The judges can be pretty hard on any puckers, bad stitching, and finishes. He says that his roll is to listen very clearly to the designers, then advise and motivate them to “Make it Work!”
I had to make a new dress for this special event, so I chose Gertie’s vintage inspired Butterick 6094. It has a close fitting lined bodice and contrasting facings. Version A has a full circle skirt cut on the bias, and a petticoat.
It has the cutest back detail, with the contrasting fabric opened out above the zipper and decorated with buttons. I made a muslin of the bodice first, tweaked the pattern to fit me, and then cut and sewed it together. I wasn’t going to add the petticoat, but at the last minute I decided that I should just go for it and make the dress as directed. I drove to the nearest fabric store, 40 miles round trip, and bought 3 yards of lining and 3 yards of crisp veil-like fabric for the ruffle. I sewed French seams on the petticoat and machine gathered the 8 inch ruffle that attaches to it. I was able to roll hem the ruffle, the petticoat, and the skirt bottom on my serger. I used wooly nylon on the upper looper and it worked like a dream! I covered two buttons with the dress fabric, and inserted an invisible zipper. The lining was turned and hand-sewn inside the bodice and along the zipper tape.
At the reception, my daughter who works for the Commonwealth Club introduced me to Tim and we posed for pictures.
I told Tim that I had made my dress. He was very impressed! I wore my RTW faster pin proudly and was delighted to explain that all of us fasters had pledged not to buy ready-to-wear clothing. Our goal is to make everything. You can see by his studious look that he was intrigued.
This is definitely my best and favorite dress of all time. It is so lovely that I have planned to make another one to wear to my daughter’s wedding in October. It will be made of silk chiffon and taffeta. It might be the next best thing I make!