Friday, 30 January 2015

That Time I Tried Smocking

I sewed my self a sweet flowy night gown the other day - Its been quite fun wearing it to bed - I feel a bit like a Grecian goddess :)
I made it out of some ridiculously soft and drapey (and just a little bit see-through) rayon I got yonks ago from spotlight ( so not great quality - but my bed doesn't mind).  I used an old vintage pattern my friend lent me - Woops forgot to write down the details .  
The best bit about it... 
SMOCKING

In the words of Penny from Miranda - "Wot fun!"

So this was the first time I have tried smocking - I remember having dresses with smocked yokes when I was little ( and loving them! thanks Mardie), but I haven't really seen it around lately.  
However a quick internet search and you would think it never went out of fashion, indeed others have commented on its come-back.  There are so many blogs, how-to's, tutorials, and inspiration out there! 

Whoever knew there were so many different types of smocking also?  As it turns out, I did English smocking which is meant to be easier, as you pre-gather the fabric.  Only when showing my boyfriends mum a picture of THE nighty did I find out that there are machines that gather the fabric for you.... A tempting investment? 

For the regular smocking you don't gather the fabric  - Honeycomb smocking tutorial  
Whilst for the English you gather it first then stitch it  
There are also some good pinterest boards about smocking 
There's lots of inspiration out there
How sweet is this one? 
Something a grown-up could wear
Or an evil queen...(?)
Even though the patter was "vintage" (read: old) it came with an iron on smocking grid - Best thing ever - No rule(r)s for me! 
So in the end - I gathered the fabric and copied some stitches I found on the internet in two different shades of blue. 

Not the neatest as you will note - but I'm happy with it for a first attempt!


Think one of the difficulties was doing a double thickness, due to the REALLY thin fabric!

Light grey/blue and blue

 I wasn't (and still aren't) sure if I should take the gathering out afterwards? I did for the waistband but left it in for the shoulders (as they were the first bit I smocked - and were VERY rough).  

So any tips, suggestions, resources, to tempt me into future smocking projects? 
So this was my 4th make for the new year (Well I finished it this year - so that counts right?)