Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Me in the Colette Hawthorn

Spring has come on crazy sudden here. It's been 30 degrees the last two days. Cool change blowing through right now. But today was perfect, simply perfect, for wearing my Colette Hawthorn in Liberty Tana Lawn to the shop. I asked Fiona to take a few photos of me betwixt the linens and the hemp & organic cottons.

The hills are alive....

It's so twirly!

My version is a fair bit less fitted than many versions I've seen online, but the Liberty has zero give in it and ... I have probably a little too much give these days, ha. Anyway I think it has shape and comfort in really good balance for my liking.

I made a muslin in size 10 and made a few adjustments to fit: raised the waist, let out the side seams and front bodice darts to widen the waist (tapering up to nothing under the arms) and took a wedge out of the bodice centre back where it meets the skirt to fix where it was scooping down a bit (I guess a kind of sway-back adjustment). If you look at the first photo in particular, I think I should have shortened the sleeves by the same amount as I shortened the bodice (I didn't adjust them at all). They're more almost-full-length than 3/4.

I cut the skirt back on the fold, since my print was directional and there were no fabric savings to be made by cutting it in two halves running opposite ways. I also sewed the collar with a 1/4 inch seam allowance as per comments I'd read from other Hawthorn sewists. It seems the pattern was accidentally made with only this narrow allowance on the collar rather than the 5/8 inch allowance elsewhere. Anyway with the 1/4" s/a it worked just right.

I added a waist-stay of cotton twill ribbon, sewing it to the seam allowance and finishing with a snap closure behind the button placket at the front. This may have been a bit of overkill given the lightness of my fabric, but on my bedsheet muslin, the weight of the full skirt pulled oddly at the waist.

I also added a little hook and thread loop helping stop any gaping at the waist. Buttons, not that you can see with the busy print going on, are assorted vintage clear glass.

I did a little bit of swearing when I cut the front bodice pieces upside-down on the print and there was not enough fabric left to re-do. But, it's such a busy print that you'd barely ever notice. I think it's a William Morris.

I felt great wearing this dress today. It made me feel a bit 'dressed up' but not inappropriate for just an ordinary day. I can definitely imagine another Hawthorn or two in my future... maybe in a plain fabric that would show off the cut a bit more.

I was thinking of making a very plain self-fabric tie belt to go with this one. What do you think?

- Jane x


  1. Hello Jean, looks great! And I love the lenght! I don't like belt myself, so I can't advice you about that.
    Francis (the Netherlands).

  2. Your dress looks great. The first thing I thought when I saw it was that a belt would really set it off nicely.

    Another idea I thought of (but I can't think whether it would look delightful or daggy) would be, if you ever make another one, perhaps making the collar and cuffs in a solid fabric.

    By the way, I think the sleeve length looks great. I think short sleeves would also look good for a summer version.

    Great job :)

  3. It looks fab Jane - very twirly! It sounds as though you almost created your own pattern with all those refinements. I like the wide neck as it stops it looking too prim.

  4. You look beautiful!
    Yay for warmer weather.

  5. Oh, so twirly! Love it - the fabric and the style - it is very flattering. You are always so good at adjusting patterns - you are my self sewing role model!

  6. Jane, the dress is gorgeous (Liberty!!!! So. Beautiful.) and so are you! Love your happy twirl! And I like the looser look, it's very soft, flowy, and flattering. I would probably do a brown leather belt myself, something a bit rough and hand-tooled, perhaps? It looks great without a belt too.

  7. It looks fantastic on you Jane! Gorgeous!!

  8. Oh it's wonderful - so much nicer on you than a hanger. I think a simple belt would look great - I love that it's twirly. Very nice Jane.

  9. Looks great Jane, simple belt would look good too, but it doesn't cry out for it:)

  10. Looks great Jane, simple belt would look good too, but it doesn't cry out for it:)

  11. Spin, Jane, spin!!
    Okay, I just have to say that the fit on this dress looks perfect! I am super-impressed! And you look just lovely in it...especially in your shop!

  12. Love love the dress and the fabric and the twirl! Cx

  13. Pretty, I like your long sleeved version and the floral print :)

  14. Oh gosh, thank you so much for all the lovely comments, people! It was a fairly involved sew and I took it slow, over quite a number of weeks, but I am really enjoying the end result.

  15. Now this I really like (and I'd never have spotted some bits were cut upside down) and I'm really glad you made it in liberty tana lawn, as it would be my choice for the hawthron too, I'm just deciding if I can afford it, but you can buy good LTL on ebay over here for a bit less than the full price, always a winner. I quite like the sleeve length left longer, actually. 30 degrees, now that's a distant memory - ha ha!

  16. Looks lovely!! Your fabric choice is fantastic. I have to sew it too soon…:)

  17. Love this! It's by far my favorite Hawthorne I've seen. Great job, it looks beautiful on you!

    1. Thanks Camille, makes me feel like wearing it again right now but it's midwinter :)


Hey, I would really love to know what you think. Go on!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...