With so much time on my hands, I decided that I should make an effort to do some more sewing and improve my skills a little bit. I decided I would try some downloadable patterns from the internet- novice level ones- as my first tasks before tackling more complicated patterns.
My first dress, which I am quite proud of, is a Maria Von Trapp-esque masterpiece. Rather than buy new fabric to make the dress, like Maria, I used fabric from old household items. In my case, an Ikea duvet cover that used to cover the bed in the infamous "Red Room" in the Irving Street house. The duvet cover had a large hole in it, but still had yards and yards of useable fabric, perfect for turning into clothes and whatnot. Who knows, maybe with the remaining fabric I'll make some lederhosen for... ummm... Kurt! God bless Kurt!
I found the dress pattern, Anda, on Burdastyle... the dress was cute, looked fairly easy, and I loved all of the simple modifications that I saw sewers making to the pattern, particularly an obi-style belt in place of the elastic/tie waist called for in the pattern. I found these free instructions for making an easy obi and gave it a whirl using the same duvet cover fabric, lined with some felt from an old Halloween costume. The other change I made to the pattern was to use red piping to finish the neck and armholes rather than bias tape, since I haven't found a store that sells bias tape yet here in Jakarta.
I struggled a little bit with how to sew up the ends of the piping at the seams, and found it hard to properly hem a dress on myself, but otherwise things were pretty straightforward. Without the built-in waistband, the dress is basically a sack with arm and neckholes, but with the belt on it, it's pretty flattering, I think. I think next time I could go down a size, as it's pretty room and the armholes are a little big.
Fraulein Maria would be so proud!
I'll try to get a photo of it on me, but so far my self-portrait efforts are a failure.