4.05.2011

Fruit basket

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I got this dress a while ago at Ladybirds General Store for nearly nothing since they sold it to me off the repair rack. It was in baaaaaad condition, it had been taken in with crooked stitching, had open seams, holes, the zipper was puckered, and worst of all had been "hemmed" (again, crookedly) with iron on hem tape. I can't tell you how much I hate that stuff. Most hems should be hand stitched, not machine, and most certainly not set with sticky iron on strips. After time the tape deteriorates, or just becomes sticky goo, and can ruin the fabric.

Do. Not. Use. Hem. Tape.

So I spent about a week restoring the poor little thing to it's original state, and it turned out quite nice! And when I picked up this fantastic cherry hat last week at Lodekka I knew just what to wear it with!

Dress-Ladybirds General Store

Hat-Lodekka

Shoes-Gift from Twila Jean

46 comments:

Stephanie Lynn said...

Glad you were able to save the dress! I love the hat! I've been drawn to hats with a partly upturned brim lately. I like the asymmetry of them.

toridawn said...

Such a great dress and hat! I do most of my sewing by hand because my (awesome 1940s Singer) sewing machine is busted. I'm not so bummed about it, though, since a hand-sewn lockstitch holds repairs on a vintage dress like nobody's business.

Katherine said...

Oh! I bought some hem tape a while back with no idea how to use it. Now I think I won't bother!
Love your style :)
xox
Katherine

Dolly the Bird said...

Oh God, how I hate hem tape! I found the most gorg little paisley patterned, high ruffled neck, sheer crepe mini a year ago that had a crooked re-hem with hem tape. NIGHTMARE!! I finally got the hem straightened, but the leftover hem tape kept pulling at my tights whenever I'd wear it! Solution: I hemmed a satin ribbon, wide enough to cover the catchy bits of dried tape all around the inside bottom of the hem!

Christy said...

Every time I've found a dress with hem tape, I've become more and more averse to the stuff. It really makes a terrible mess, doesn't it?

And you look lovely as always--perfectly coiffed and dressed to the nines! I feel like you must make a lot of people smile when you pass them on the sidewalk. :)

Nina said...

OH MY GOODNESS!!! This dress is sooo beautiful. You sure did a heck of a job fixing it up! ♥♥♥

Nina said...

ALSO I LOVE THE HAT :)

Bonnie McGowan said...

You did a wonderful job! I'm jealous of your sewing skills. And that hat.

Your blog is lovely ♥

art deco dame said...

Hem tape is the devil. Glad you were able to restore the dress!

Pinup Dresses said...

Super adorable! Someone called you a living doll.. I have to agree ;) Such style!

Vintagesuburbia said...

You are glorious! Also glad you could restore the dress. I have limited sewing skills but I do rather enjoy darning moth holes and other small mending tasks (although I find repairing beading to be tres laborious!!). I find I can real bargains for items with flaws, and also it is quite therapeutic to restore something back to (almost) its former glory! I am always sort of proud to wear something I have worked on myself, rather than something pristine (a nice sense of accomplishment!). Best, VS

Sarah said...

Hmm.. thankyou for the word of caution regarding hems, I'm a bit of a sewing novice, but I'll stear clear of tape from now on. Also, that hat, too cute!

Alli said...

Wow Solanah! What a fantastic job you've done repairing that dress. It looks fantastic, and with the hat it looks perfect. They go so well together :)

Annuschka said...

Great dress! Simple, but beautiful :)

Cassandra said...

Ah! LOVE! <3 That fruit dress and hat are darling! You did a great job fixing up that dress.

I'm still learning to sew, but I will definitely make a mental note to never use hem tape! Especially now that I know it can ruin the fabric. Definitely wouldn't want that to happen... especially to one of my vintage items!

DaneMum said...

Beautiful dress - and you're SO right - most hems SHOULD be stiched by hand!

northwest is best said...

Gorgeous! I haven't progressed to handstitched hems yet - but that's ok because I've been practising the machine stitched version with naff 80s polyester frocks. Unfortunately, here in England sewing isn't a skill taught in many schools, and definitely not in the one I went to.

vivI.Iviv said...

so inspiring x keep it up!!! ^_^

vivI.Iviv
www.lovexevol.blogspot.com <3

disappeared said...
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Erika said...

So cute! Wonderful that the dress came to a happy home where it could be saved =) You did such a great job on it! I often feel less inspired to mend than to sew new, but sometimes it can be so very rewarding to take the time and effort.

You look adorable, and the hat is gorgeous, as always =)

rosie-alia said...

What a fantastic outfit! I love how you've managed to save and restore that wonderful dress...and the hat goes just perfectly with it. xx

Retro-Couture said...

What a beautiful dress :-) Love your blog!!
Kind regards Linda (from Denmark)

Charlotte said...

Still jealous of the hat! And that dress was well worth the time spent restoring it - it's gorgeous!

xx Charlotte
Tuppence Ha'penny Vintage

Mom of 5 said...

I love the dress. I love the hat! AMAZING outfit!!!!!!

farbpenchilla said...

it looks fantastic. the whole outfit is great and the hat..oh, it's awesome!

MB@YarnUiPhoneApp said...

I have an amazing chevron-striped cotton dress from the 1940s that I plucked for $5 from a local antique store. Similar store, although rips on the bodice. With a little creative embroidery, I brought it back to life. Now when I wear it, I get compliments, compliments. Moral of the story: you can find the dress of your dreams and price range if you're willing to sweat a little.

Free Spirit said...

Fantastic! I also do all my own sewing repair work, but I dont think I've ever come across hem tape...it may be a thing only found in America, coz I've never seen it in Australia, lucky us =]
I adore the dress.

http://mymothersdiamondring.blogspot.com

Anja said...

Awww, you look so pretty!!!

Natasha de Vil said...

This is my favouite outfit to date, love the dress and am so glad you were able to restore it to it's orginal fabulousness (probably not a real word but anyhoo).

Rory said...

great blog!
love your dress :)

casey said...

Ugh. Iron-on hem tape is of the devil, I'm convinced! Whenever I buy a lot of bias/hem tapes at thrift stores, I always toss the iron-on stuff. It should be burned! lol.

Glad you could restore this dress--it's utterly adorable! And that hat is perfect with it. So cute!

♥ Casey

jojography said...

You look gorgeous! Perfect, like just walking out from a movie scene. Good thing you found that poor dress and could save it, you did such a good job. And I'll definitely think of you, if I would ever want to use iron-on hem tape.

Ms.Tips said...

Don't you just love saving a great dress? it's like saving a baby :) I love the print! and of course the hat looks great, as usual!!

Q's Daydream said...

Gorgeous! I love the color of these photos!

magpie said...

I love the layered ruffles. What a nice touch.

Dakota said...

It cleaned up so nicely; it's such an adorable dress, and how absolutely perfect for that hat! I love how coordinated all your red accessories are here; too cute!

Amber Blue Bird said...

you did an amazing job cleaning up that dress, it looks stellar on you as does that beautiful hat

Fran said...

Beautiful dress, in fact, the whole outfit is simply divine. Great styling. xx

www.alittlevintagestory.blogspot.com

Mrs Amber said...

So lovely!! It's one of my favourites for sure!

hurricanekerrie said...

Wow you certainly restored this dress! It looks perfect on you now and great with all the other accessories you chose. Have you been back to the store? I bet they won't even recognize this.

HAF said...

Such a gorgeous dress. I am envious of your sewing skills, I saw a beautiful 40s fur coat in a vintage shop the other day but it needed too much work, I couldn't do it justice. I love you blog, it always brightens my day :)
x

hellogoodbyedesigns said...

I loveeeee your blog!!! I am loving vintage at the moment! I am actually getting obsessed with 1940s!! Can I please have your email address?
Tania xXx

jess said...

That hat looks so stunning on you. Good job on restoring the dress. It looks great.

Ana Peregrine said...

Is this on Bellmont? God, so homesick.

Victoria / Justice Pirate said...

the dress is so ladylike and looks amazing on you and the hat suits it perfectly too.

Solanah said...

Hurricanekerrie, I haven't but I hope to soon!

Of course Tania, it's solanahraquel(at)gmail.com

Ana, Yep, right between Saint Cupcake and Laughing Planet :)