A Christmas Camber

At the end of November I visited The Knitting and Stitching Show in Harrogate for the third year. I guess the longer I sew, the more knowledgeable I become in terms of the types of fabric available as well as what constitutes a decent price. This year I was quite restrained and after doing a couple of circuits of the disorientating halls I parked my mum with a cuppa and headed back to get some of the beautiful stork fabric by Lady McElroy. As I was waiting to pay at the Cool Crafting stand, a lady in the queue was checking the back of the Merchant and Mills Camber Dress pattern envelope before ordering 2.5m of metallic Robert Kaufman linen. I asked whether she was planning her Christmas dress, whilst simultaneously deciding I too wanted to make one. Neither the storks nor the metallic was cheap, but they were good quality, so I coughed up for the combined 5m and returned to my mum.

I’d already bought The Camber pattern from Rachel in the summer, and whipped one up using a sheer but pretty floral my dad brought back from Myanmar. I’ve worn it with a belt (and slip!) several times, and liked how the pattern sewed up. In this fabric it’s a nice cool dress for the warmer weather.

It’s a straightforward make without fastenings, with a yoke for a bit of interest on the back, but I thought the simplicity of the pattern and plain yet metallic fabric would mean I could dress it up with a necklace or scarf, or simply by standing beside the most decorative item in the house:

I wore it at home on Christmas Day and to my Nan’s on Boxing Day and found it comfortable throughout. I found a gold belt that picked up the shine in the fabric.Not your traditional Christmas blooms but my mum wanted to buy my some flowers when we did our Christmas Eve food shop, and actually the tulips have been beautiful.

The only thing I think this dress is lacking is pockets ~ maybe something to add next time? I have an end of bolt piece of beautiful navy linen with peach flowers I also bought from Rachel waiting to be sewn up into a Camber (with pockets?) sometime soon.

Since Christmas I’ve already sewn two more dresses with a third cut out and just begun. Here’s to plenty more sewing in 2018 🥂


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