Laurel Dress by Colette Patterns

Colette Laurel Dress
Hey! I made something I can wear!

But wait, let me back up a bit. You know that I make a lot of things, but sewing a garment has never been something I’ve excelled in. After begging for a remake on the garment sewing assignment in college, even though I chose a simple Calvin Klein straight skirt pattern and spent way too much precious college money on the cashmere wool fabric I had to have, I shamefully, yet thoroughly, erased garment making off my list.
This cautionary tale is being told to you by the same girl whose college major was Apparel Design (called Human Environmental Sciences at the time). The same girl who worked in the fashion industry for many years. I even wrote tech packs!
Yet I managed to avert any need to actually sew a garment.
But really, what is the mental block? Wouldn’t it be great to make clothes that really fit me? In fabric that I love? Wouldn’t it be great to add beautiful finishing details? After many thwarted attempts I realized that I should probably take a class.

Colette Laurel Dress

When I saw that Drygoods Design was teaching a Laurel Dress class, I decided to sign up, and I’m so glad I did. Colette patterns are very well written, geared toward someone like me. During our first class, our lovely teacher Julia helped guide us to create a perfectly-fit Laurel muslin out of something wonderful and amazing called Swedish tracing paper, which we then used to create our actual garment.  I learned how to make necessary tweaks here and there to create a proper fit, and how to take my fear out of adding a lining (the very part that screwed up my college skirt). I chose a beautiful black cotton lawn for my Laurel (always have to pick nice fabric!). I had the chance to put the finishing touches on it over the weekend, and guess what? It really does fit me! I cut mine to a tunic length, and although I didn’t add any of the customizeable variations it has, I’m thinking the bell sleeves on the next one.
See? I’m thinking about the next one.
Meanwhile I have an urge to arrange flowers and look out the window.
  • Debbie

    November 5, 2013 at 7:04 am

    Very cool to get over that hurdle! Hope it inspires you on to more garment greatness…

  • mom

    November 5, 2013 at 8:10 am

    Very good Blair. I knew you could do it.

  • kat

    November 5, 2013 at 8:55 am

    It looks great! I really need to get back to sewing clothes. My biggest success was my bridesmaids dress for my sister’s wedding.

  • melissa f

    November 5, 2013 at 10:43 am

    it looks great, blair.
    i need to start sewing for myself again. that pattern is on my list.

  • Chris

    November 5, 2013 at 11:02 am

    Wha?! I didn’t even know about this place! So excited to explore it!

  • claire

    November 5, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    way to go, blair! melissa got me this pattern for my birthday but i’m yet to attempt it. soon(ish)

  • Ayelet

    November 5, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    Beautiful, Blair!

  • erin

    November 6, 2013 at 5:09 am

    go you! it looks fantastic!

  • Cheryl Arkison

    November 7, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    Gorgeous! I so wish someone here would offer a class like that. I approach garments the same way you do.
    Maybe I’ll just have to go to Seattle…

  • Lizette

    November 8, 2013 at 10:05 am

    Lovely top. It looks great, and if it has pockets…even better!

  • Emily Pearce

    November 11, 2013 at 11:58 am

    Looks great! I just received the Collette Patterns book as a gift. Loving it. It’s great being able to have clothes that really fit me.

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