Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Charlotte's second new look...

Okay, I know that I have sooooo much other stuff to do, so much stuff that I was just complaining about it yesterday, and that I already finished Charlotte's last outfit (Thus completing my list requirement for her) but I couldn't just stop there. But in my defense there's a huge reason for why I had to do this.
And the reason is, shoes, I'll explain. The Target exclusive shoe pack that is. I have been wanting, dreaming, and lusting after this shoe pack ever since it came out, needing it badly. The reason why I don't have it yet is because there are no local Target stores, and we rarely venture out to towns that have Targets. The last time we tried, my father had to get the help of two clueless clerks to find it only to be told they didn't have it, even though their website said it was in stock. Liars (and poor costumer service to boot)!
But I still want it, so much. I've been trying to find a way to a Target, but recently one presented itself. When we're up in Connecticut we're boarding our dog (Pach) at the Vet's office my sister work at in Raleigh. And you know what Raleigh has? A Target. So pray for me that they'll have it in stock, or else I'll be a very unhappy camper (like no joke, total brat). The only issue is that if I do get it then, I'll be leaving for Connecticut either the next day or possibly the same day. Imagine getting 18 new pairs of shoes and having nothing to wear them with? That might literally dive me mad (or madder). And since I'm going to be in Connecticut with only Charlotte to try them on, and a limited costume selection I had to find a happy solution.
So you see I couldn't just sit back and let the chips fall where they may. I had to get something for Charlotte that was attractive on her and was neutral enough to go with several type of shoes in a variety of colors. Unfortunately I didn't have anything like that on hand, so it was up to me to make it (isn't that always the case?). I decided on making a very cute cocktail dress in black, since black goes with everything. I was going to use the dress pattern from "Barbie in Japan" that you've seen the corset from time and time again. Although once again I was going to modify it so it wasn't an exact copy. (I do this a lot.)
I started off with the bodice, I've make this bodice so often that I should be able to do it in my sleep, although I did manage to do something to throw off the fit. It wasn't too terrible, so I just went with it. The skirt was where I was going to start off changing the original pattern. I was going to add a ruffle at the hem of the skirt, similar to what I did for the Steampunk skirt. I really like the ruffled skirt hem, it adds a touch of romantic elegance. A nice touch of interest that is not too overwhelming. Unfortunately it means that I'm going to have to deal with sewing down gathers. Which I have the worst time with gathers messing up. Either they're very unevenly spaced out, or the unfinished edge flips under and you can see it from the front. Both issues make me have to redo it again. I was NOT going to do that this time, so I really worked with it, pinning it down before I sewed. It came out really nice. I think that's what I should do from now on. It's an extra step (that I should have been doing already in all honesty) but it saves me so much hair pulling. Enough successes, let's get into the issues. So I attached the skirt to the bodice, and then I tried it on Charlotte and the skirt just hung there. Limp, like a wet noodle. There was no cute flounce what so ever. Also the length was a little matronly for what I wanted. So I removed the skirt and cut off 1/4 of an inch from the top of it. Then sewed it back on and hemmed the back. For some reason after that I could not get it to fit right. No matter what I did the skirt would not look good, also it was flaring out to the right. So frustrating. I was getting pretty mad so I walked away.
A few hours later I felt like I wanted to go back. I think my issue was that I put the skirt right at the waist. With that pattern and Charlotte's body type she looks really good with a lower waist. So if I lowered where I attached the skirt it would look and fit much better. The problem was that I had already trimmed the corset material so I couldn't attach it any lower. So I was forced to make another top, not a huge deal since the fit in the original top wasn't that great to begin with. The second one came out much better, and I was able to salvage the skirt from the original dress (Yay!). There's some minor gap issues at the back, but nothing too out there. It closes with two snaps. After I added those I made the straps. I originally was going to go with the original strap design, but after I made them I decided I wanted to put them in backwards, and placed so they were off the shoulder. That's the final thing I had to do, with them sewn in I was done. Stepping back and looking at it I can't be anymore pleased with it. It's so timeless, so classic, so pretty. To accessorize it I gave her a simple silver necklace (pearls came off as too stuffy). She's also wearing the underskirt from the Steampunk outfit. That helps give the skirt some lovely volume. I also soaked the dress to get rid of the extra dye since it's Black. You would not believe the color that the water turned, it was gross.
I just hope that I get the shoe pack or else all this hard work was for naught (and I won't lie, I'll be pretty crabby), but I am packing the shoes she's wearing now just in case. It would be so annoying to pack an outfit and not have shoes.
So pretty!

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