Monday, July 24, 2006

Elegance for Girls

"The more simply a little girl is dressed--sweaters and skirts in the winter, Empire-style cotton dresses in the summer--the more chic she is. . . In the summer she would be charming in high-waisted cotton dresses of flowered Liberty prints, and of white eyelet embroidery for party dresses. For the beach she would need a white pique sun-bonnet, one-piece bathing suit, white sandals, and always a wool cardigan within hand's reach in the same colour as the bathing suit."

--Genevieve Antoine Dariaux in A Guide to Elegance: For Every Woman Who Wants to Be Well and Properly Dressed on All Occasions.

With this wise advice from 1964 in mind, I am helping Clara pack for camp. Simple cotton dresses, yes. Solid color knit shirts in pastels, and cute capri pants, yes. I don't think she's going to take the sun-bonnet though.

Despite the fact that she's leaving in a week, she has begun a new sewing project: her first independently-sewn garment. It's a charming loose-woven linen in cream and peach stripes and tiny flowers, and she is doing marvellously well. The pattern calls for facing around the neckline, but she has decided to line the bodice due to the sheer nature of the fabric. She cut it out yesterday and has the (pleated) skirt constructed, the bodice constructed and lined, and one sleeve set in perfectly! One more sleeve, the zipper, and the hem, and she is done. Her precise and thorough nature stand her in good stead when it comes to sewing, so that she is perfectly willing to hand-baste all the tricky parts, carefully finish all the seams, and the foundation of the project, the cutting out, is done very, very carefully. It's so much fun to watch her take off on her own!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I hope you'll post some pictures of Clara's project, Anna. I'm inspired to sew just reading this post.

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