Friday, January 20, 2012

frankly my dear…or is that too obvious of a title?

i have a sewing bucket list.

skills i’d like to learn/master/just become more proficient at. dresses i’d like to recreate, or some i’ve dreamed up i’d like to bring to fruition…

i got a big one done back when i did so you think you’re crafty—the my fair lady ascot races dress.

ascot ascot2

boy do i love that dress.

and this week i got to cross another one off my list:
reproduce scarlett o’hara’s green floral twelve oaks barbeque dress


but hey, what’s a scarlett without her rhett?


meet tiny scarlett and tiny rhett.
in MY version of gone with the wind, scarlett realizes what a wienie ashley is and immediately marries rhett.

and how could you not? i mean, seriously. have you seen this guy?


i thought clark gable was good. this little man puts him to shame. me-OW.

and i’m not the only one who thinks so…

IMG_9135_8270 IMG_9136_8271

these two little hams yucked it up in the lobby of a local hotel…making for scads of adorableness…and not many good shots showing the actual DRESS i made ;)


but how stinkin’ cute are they???

anyway, this dress was one of my reader submissions for this week’s challenge at project run and play, sewing through the decades

if there’s anything that will catch you a googiemomma hook, line and sinker—it’s a retro sewing challenge.

the biggest challenge: the fabric itself has that distinctive variegated green floral pattern.

 if you do some research (which i did) you’ll find out some crazy things:
  • the fabric of the original dress was hand printed. they made only enough to make the one original dress, and that was it.
  • until, that is, a company researched it extensively and began producing and selling reproduction fabric in the 1990s (the bolt of fabric costs OVER $600 and you need the entire bolt to make the dress!)
  • you can buy some insanely incredible repro dresses. they take a minimum of 18 yards of fabric, and can go up to 23+ yards.
  • the ribbon woven through her ruffled top? one reproduction maker said she sews in excess of 1100 individual buttonholes to weave the velvet ribbon through.
  • some people are seriously, seriously INSANE.
i’m crazy, but i’m not THAT kind of cray-cray. i’m crazy + cheap. soooo, my dress was made from an old white sheer curtain layered over a white flat sheet.

the skirt is a basic circle skirt with a few extra panels sewn in for good measure.


for the bodice i traced out a shirt, then adjusted the neckline and shoulder to make it similar to scarlet’s (without being quite so low-cut).


the floral design, however…

i headed up to michaels, 40% off coupons in hand, and bought myself a little selection of…well, whatever i thought might help me make a floral pattern on my fabric.


and then i apparently set up the dress like a dartboard, closed my eyes and THREW ALL OF IT ON TOP.


first i used the spray fabric die in olive green over a stencil. um, yeah—that stuff STINKS. after about 2 sprays it got clogged and “shot” more than it “sprayed”.
so then i mixed green and black fabric paint and painted some leaves on. then i used a floral-ish stamp to stamp all over. i may have been a little panicky at that point.

THEN, i rinsed it all off.

let’s be honest here: when it looked like it did in that picture up top, i was fairly certain i had a big huge craft FAIL on my hands.

but once i rinsed it out and ran it through the washer once for good measure…well, if it’s not exactly scarlett—it’s close enough for me (close enough that i wasn’t even ONCE tempted to spend $600 on repro fabric)


it’s really hard to photograph, but it’s actually a really pretty design i ended up with.
on purpose.

toooottttallly on purpose.

and yeah, that ribbon? i cut holes with my scissors and wove the ribbon through. i’d rather poke myself in the eye with a hot poker than try doing the probably 100 buttonholes it would have taken.

true story.

i’m not all about the cheater method, though: the green velvet waistband is lined and boned, however.
and by “boned”, i mean “filled with cardboard and scrap wood i found lying around”.


it’s all about the historical accuracy folks.

whatev. in the end i had what i wanted: one (vaguely) scarlett o’hara dress, with which to do one adorable photo shoot.

(he was totally in the middle of telling her she looked like a princess right here. and then i died. i’m starting to think arranged marriages aren’t such a bad idea.)

and then they got what they wanted--in the form of junk food.
rhett did have to shave first.

pssstttt…did you catch where i said this was ONE of the dresses i did for project run & play? yup, i couldn’t decide which decade. and in typical googiemomma fashion, i did two. hey—for a while i thought i could do three. so two's reasonable, right? right? anyway…come back monday for the other one!
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  1. and then I died! Omygosh! How cute! And I never would have guessed about how you made the fabric. I am in awe of your creating prowess!

  2. haha! thanks! i never would have guessed how i made the fabric either...actually, i'm still not really sure. ;)

  3. Shannon!! That dress is insanely gorgeous!! The pics from the photo shoot are so adorable!! When I grow up, I want to have a tiny bit of your talent!

    1. Thanks Debbie! It's the models that make the clothes--I'm just fortunate to have access to so many good ones! ;)

  4. Omg!! They are so cute!!

  5. And I had no idea you even had a blog. Where in the world do you find the time? You are my shero!
    Love the dress and of course I'm quite particular to that Rhett you borrowed.

  6. I Love, Love, Love it! and Gigi was such a little ham!!! The pics are priceless!!

  7. The dress is gorgeous! I can't wait to see what else you came up with. This one alone must have taken a lot of time!

  8. I have only one thing to say..Ashley Wilkes likes a woman with a healthy appetite (for BBQ)

    1. But the Wilkes always marry they cousins.

      and that's just gross.

  9. I can't believe you did all that to the dress. I'm sure my project would have been a FAIL if I had tried stamping, spraying, etc. Great job and very creative!

    1. Oh trust me--I was very certain it was a FAIL. when in doubt, rinse it out. that's
      My new saying. feel free to make a printable and pin.

  10. Do you think you could do a tutorial on the curtain dress? I am dying to know how to make it for my daughter....

  11. Do you think you could do a tutorial on the curtain dress? I am dying to know how to make it for my daughter....

  12. That is so amazing. I love GWTW!!! Thanks!


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