Sewing for Paris! #1 La Petite Robe

By Victoria As-it-Seams - 14:06

Reality and fantasy are converging - and they're meeting in Paris!

Can you tell I'm excited?! And this is my new dress to celebrate!

Merchant and Mills, linen, Vanessa Pouzet, la petite robe, as-it-seams

It all began when an invite popped into my inbox  from Annika at Nah Connection saying, "What about a 'real meet-up in Paris?" 
My heart said '"oui", then my head said...'how?'
But when you want something you make it happen.
And then you sew a new dress.... 

Merchant and Mills, linen, Vanessa Pouzet, la petite robe, as-it-seams

So the theme of this post is 'Fantasy and Reality'. And my fantasy was to have an incredibly stylish City Break Wardrobe, and to ditch my usual child-friendly jeans for a weekend of Parisian Chic...
This pattern, Vanessa Pouzet's La Petite Robe, seemed the kind of understated simplicity I was after. And it's French!

Merchant and Mills, linen, Vanessa Pouzet, la petite robe, as-it-seams

This is actually the third time I've sewn this pattern (fourth if you include the muslin) But I'm blogging them the wrong way round - you'll have to come back for  the next versions, which are so different. 

The pattern is just Parisian perfection. 
It's so simple yet  beautifully constructed, with a lovely yoke and lining so there is not a single exposed seam anywhere. 

I only modified it by adding 'in seam' pockets - which perhaps affect the stylish line of the skirt , but I NEED pockets in a dress.

Merchant and Mills, linen, Vanessa Pouzet, la petite robe, as-it-seams

The fabric is grey linen from Merchant and Mills, bought from my local shop Herringbone (and it is simply heavenly). The colour has a kind of softness, an uneven weave that means it's going to look better and better every time I wash it.

And now the fantasy is about to become reality. And of course, I don't  have a 'Weekend City Break' Wardrobe ready to go. It looks like it's going to be rainy and cool, and the vision I had of being that stylish woman on the Champs Elysees in spring sunshine, is a fantasy.  But that's fine by me.

Because the reality is even more amazing. A dozen women have made something incredible happen. 

There have been endless online messages and excited comments, but now we're finally about to stroll the boulevards, and shop for French fabric.
What could be more fun!?
Especially when you look who's going to be there!

We will be 14 women from nine different European countries: 

And we've been a great team! Between us we've bagged some fantastic prizes to giveaway. Honestly the fabric, the patterns! There are some serious goodies up for grabs very soon. Do make sure you pop back in a week or two. And there's plenty of Paris excitement . Pop over to Anneka here for her pre-Paris creation.

I am so honoured to be included, but I'm also slightly nervous. 

This whole adventure has made me think about our online world, where reality and fantasy blend seamlessly. 
Blogging is about sharing creativity but I often wonder, just how 'real' is it all? 
This little blog has been a gateway to making online sewing buddies, but meeting up in real life is going to be so exciting and different. For a start they will actually see the crooked zip on the back of this dress!

So before we meet, I have some confessions, because our blogs present the 'edited versions' of ourselves.
Firstly, this is not my sofa. I don't live in a spotless, tidy house, in fact the opposite. It's cramped and cluttered, I sew on my kitchen table,  and there isn't much spare cash, my fabric stash is a real indulgence.
Secondly, I am not chic and stylish. This is me, rather self-consciously pretending to be a model.

And I am actually delighted to be meeting these friends in reality. It's going to be such a thrill to actually  talk sewing, and fabric.... 

Oh and stroll down the banks of the Seine and gaze at the Parisian skyline and drink coffee and eat proper croissants.
The full update will be on its way! 
(As well as a little more Sewing for Paris!)

Merchant and Mills, linen, Vanessa Pouzet, la petite robe, as-it-seams

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  1. Wow so cool! You will have the best time! And in almost unimaginable case you won't, you at least have this perfect chic city dress! :)

  2. I love this heart-warming post! And I'm excited too!

  3. Well you look stunning, chic and groovy to me and I am sure everyone will love you. Have a super fun time... Love the dress and your new blog!!!!!

  4. Oh how exciting! I hope you will have sew much fun (sorry could not resist). I love your new dress, you look stunning in it!

  5. Love your post and the dress. Can't wait to meet you in Paris. Talking of confessions, my favourite sewing tool is Photoshop ;-) I'm so glad that others have wonky zips, wonky zips are real. xx

  6. such a lovely dress! Can`t wait to meet you in person. I feel like you. I`m so nervos about tomorrow... But if i read your text i`m sure the imperfection we going to show to each other makes us human, and it`s probably what we gonna like on each other. See you soon hug nina

  7. Oh, I am so excited for all of you! I had a chance to do something similar when I met 4 blogging friends in New York last summer. What an incredible experience that was! Enjoy!

  8. Great dress and great post Victoria! I like real, real life some times is glamorous, some times no. But is what we got. Have a blast in :Paris! enjoy.

  9. Somehow I missed this post in my reader! You look stunning! I have found that blogs actually pretty well depict who people are in real life. I have met quite a lot of adoptive families in real life, after knowing them from blogging, and the truth is the transition was absolutely seamless. it was as though we had been friends forever. It's so cool! And it wasn't awkward at all. Sounds like everything in Paris was incredible!

  10. My friend mentioned to me your blog, so I thought I’d read it for myself. Very interesting insights, will be back for more! best beginner sewing machine

  11. The internet is a great way to reach out to people without letting them right into your lives until you are ready and who does live in a spotless house. I have three kids and have trouble keeping the kitchen and bathrooms clean.

    But I love that dress. The color and fabric really suit you too.

  12. Can I just say what a relief to find someone who actually knows what theyre talking about on the internet. You definitely know how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More people need to read this and understand this side of the story. I cant believe youre not more popular because you definitely have the gift.
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