Oh summer why do you torment me so?
I love long days, blue skies, sandcastles, rockpools and more. And I love summer sewing - the chance to sew glorious prints and easy dresses - like this dreamy Nani Iro print.
But I never have enough time in summer - there is just too much to cram in to these short months and long days. And barely a minute to get behind the sewing machine. In my head it drives me crazy. Because, you know, it's August, and autumn is looming (at least in England, where the summer is all to brief) If I don't make those summer sewing projects a reality, it will have to wait til next year.
So I have a confession - I really did not treat this fabric with the respect that it deserves.
It is quite simply heavenly. The birds in this stunning print have a lilac metallic finish, that ocassionally glints in the beautiful understated touch that Naomi Ito adds to her Nani Iro designs.
I bought two metres of this from Miss Matatabi back in the spring, and intended to sew it up for Nani Iro month in June (Yes, I know - see what I mean about summer, it slips through my fingers...)
These photographs don't do justice to this dress, or the fabric, or me for that matter. They were taken after I have walked a mile across cliffs to reach our secret beach in North Devon.
So my dress is creased.
And I couldn't resist a quick swim in the sea and leaping in the Atlantic waves. So my hair is damp and salty.
And then I had to persuade Mr As-it-Seams to photograph me, and he'll do that for two minutes max before we start arguing.
So these pictures will have to do. Because heaven knows when it will be sunny again and I'll have 'another summer moment' in my Nani Iro beach dress.
OK - so here's the sewing details.
The pattern is self-drafted. I made a muslin and experimented.
I wanted a dress with no zip, to simply pull on.
I managed to achieve this and have a slim-fitting dress, with simple bust darts.
The neckline is faced, front and back, and understitched and interfaced, just to give this soft double gauze a hint of structure.
And the sleeves! Well I was in such a rush, that I cut them so that the selvege forms the hem. No hemming (although this does mean the birds are flying 'up' my arm rather than around - but I can live with that)
The hem is faced, and has splits in the side seam. I love this detail, and I was going to take more photos to show, you... but for all the reasons above, I didn't..
And that's it - it was an easy-peasey dress that I sewed in a frenzy in one evening flat. And it used just over a metre of my fabric, so I'm hoping I can make a blouse too. Watch this space....
We've been going to this secret beach for nearly 20 years and it's one of my favourite places on the planet. The surf, the rock pools, the cliffs, the green and the blue and the silver.
And we're lucky enough to have dear friends who live near here. For little girls running in the sea, this is paradise. And that roar of the ocean, calms my soul and eases my panic about summer slipping by.