Welcome to "The Dashwood Sisters"! You may know this blog as "Hooks and Needles". We have changed the name so the blog can include more than just topics relating to "hooks" and "needles". The name is the only thing different about the blog now; everything else is still here. :-)

Enjoy your look around!

Friday, April 19, 2013

New Link!

Hi Everyone!!!
This is just to let you know, I have imported this blog over to missdashwoodsewing.wordpress.com. I do most of my blogging on wordpress, so the transfer is for convenience. :)   I'm still working on getting that page in order, but in the meanwhile, all the content here is there as well, and I hope to post updates soon! :D
Thanks!
~Melanie / Elinor Dashwood

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Yellow Regency Gown ~ Part 1!

So!  After months and months of putting off cutting into that gorgeous reproduction fabric out of fear and laziness and busyness and school....
I have commenced work on my yellow Regency gown! :-D

The Christmas Regency Ball is just a month away, and as finals is the week before the ball, I thought it best to get it done while I have a lull in exams and homework.
Today I undertook the scariest part of sewing.... cutting out all the pieces.


So glad that's over with! :-)
Tomorrow I plan to begin work on the actual sewing.  Because it is reproduction fabric and I want this to be as authentic as possible, I think I might try something new and hand-sew all the visible seams.  I will also be sewing on blue piping to the neckline and sleevebands.  I'm so excited!  If it turns out as planned, it's going to be so pretty! :-)

And, after I finish the dress, if I have time, I am going to make a new petticoat and possibly a new corset.  :-)

Monday, June 18, 2012

Miss Dashwood Has Returned!

One day Miss Elinor Dashwood decided to take matters into her own hands.  Because, in the 21st century, if a single young woman cannot inherit a fortune, she can still earn it, unlike in the days of Miss Elinor Dashwood the First.  So she did something more along the lines of Anne Shirley and went away to college to study to be a teacher.  However, in order to learn how to make money, you must have money to pay for the learning, so her busyness was added to when she took a job in food services, which was not her ideal, but it must be done.

Not only that, but there was, in those parts, a certain gentleman whom she liked very much. Contrary to the story, it was not Mr. Ferrars, rather, his name was Kyle and he was more of a mix of Mr. Tilney and Mr. Darcy, with a pinch of Mr. Knightly thrown in, but mostly Mr. Tilney.  Anyway, she liked this gentleman very much, and he liked her, and they decided they liked each other enough to be boyfriend and girlfriend.  So now, with school and work, Miss Dashwood also had dinner dates and movie nights and visits with families and such, which, all things together, distracted her from her sewing for many months because she kept so incredibly busy.

Then one day Miss Dashwood and Kyle and some other friends went to a reenactment called Muster on the Maumee, where many groups of reenactors from various areas get together for one big event.  At the Muster was a shop, and in that shop were fabrics, shawls, hats, and other articles of clothing from the Regency era.  Among those fabrics was a lovely yellow fabric with a blue floral print that reminded her greatly of a gown worn by Miss Woodhouse in the most recent film adaption of Emma.  It cost more than Miss Dashwood, in her financial wisdom, usually cared to pay, but knowing it was not often that one finds a fabric they known so definitely that they want, and realizing that it had been well over a year since she had made a Regency gown for herself, she decided to buy it.

She and her friend, Miss Hayley, then began to plot to make themselves both Regency ensembles and attend a Jane Austen festival in Kentucky in July.  Whereas this plan is yet to be decided, the plan for the dress has been mostly definitely decided and the fabric is currently being washed before being cut up into pieces for a lovely Regency gown which shall look a bit like this:


Only it will probably have a gathered front bodice rather than darts.  But the overall look will be the same.




So that's what's been going on in my life!! I am sorry to be so absent!  I seriously haven't done any sewing since I started college, except for finishing up a simple skirt which I should get pictures of and post.  Anyway.... so, yes, life has been busy, what with college and work, and yes, do not doubt the narrative despite its fictional style, I do have a young man in my life named Kyle and he is awesome!! :)  We've actually been talking for about a year now, but have been officially dating since January. :)  And yes, he does remind me very much of Henry Tilney. ;)
So that's what's new with Elinor Dashwood!  I will hopefully get to work on that new dress this week, as well as some extra Regency accessories, so I will try to keep you updated! :)

P.S. I have also recently started a new blog called This Amazing Grace, which basically contains reflections from my spiritual journey, especially from this last year.  Feel free to visit if you like.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Disney Princess Themed Doll Dresses

For Christmas I made some little friends of mine Disney-themed doll dresses, based on their favorite Disney princess. It was such a fun project, and my first sewing project in a long time that was my own idea and I could do whatever I wanted with it. ;) (I've come to the realization that I don't like custom orders because I have to make things according to how other people want them and can't play around with them and make them how I want; but with projects of my own invention, I can do whatever I want with them and be as creative or uncreative as I'd like. ;) It's so much easier. ;) )

The idea started with this dress, made several months ago, from leftover fabric from the bridesmaid dresses.
I thought then that the coloring reminded me of Cinderella, and then I decided to make several doll dresses based on my friends' favorite Disney princesses.

Michaela's favorite is Tiana.
For this dress, I used was the Heritage Wrap Top Dress (which I also used for the Cinderella dress and as a base for the Snow White dress). The main fabric is a greyish-green polyester shantung. (It looks greener in person; the camera captured too much of the light reflecting off of it.) A silky off-white fabric (like was used for the sashes on the bridesmaid dresses) forms an underskirt and the lining. I was going to put the flower on the side, like Tiana's, but ended up liking it better in the front like you see in the picture.



Kirsten's favorite is Ariel.
The Ariel dress is the most unique of the four because I used a completely different pattern for it. I used the Bunny Bear 1940s Sweetheart Dress pattern as a base, altering it so that it was sleeveless (and the back is a little different to accommodate the sundress look). The alterations were tricky, but I'm pleased with the result. The top is made from purple polyester shantung (from my Little Dorrit dress). I'm not sure what the skirt fabric is; I received it in a collection of scrap fabric. ;) The flower on the side is completely random because I thought the dress needed an extra something. ;)

Brianna's favorite is Cinderella.
Again, this is the first one I made.... if I had made it with Cinderella in mind, I might have done some things different with the pattern... but I still love the way it turned out. The fabric I used is cornflower blue satin, with an additional bit of silver ribbon across the waistband. I kept pretty much totally to the original pattern with this dress.

Ivy' favorite is Snow White.
This one was definitely the most stressful one to make because I had only one day to cut it out and sew the whole thing. (I hate deadlines. :P ) I also didn't have yellow fabric for the skirt, as I would have liked... but I still think it turned out cute. The dress is a silky blue fabric, trimmed with a yellow ribbon, and the sleeves are a thin, silky white fabric (again, similar to the sashes of the bridesmaid dresses) with red trim ribbon. I used the Heritage Wrap-Top Dress pattern again, but altered it to no longer be wrap-top, but to have a rounded neckline instead.

I have one more I'd like to make, for another little friend, but I don't know whether she reads this blog or not, so I won't say any more about it for now. ;)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I might list these on Etsy as made-to-order items, as I wouldn't mind making more of them; however, I am starting college next week, and hopefully a job soon as well, so my sewing time will be greatly limited. I'm not even sure if I'll have time to sew at all, or if I'll want the pressure of extra deadlines . So... I don't know. I may or may not list them. :P But these were so much fun and I really would love to make more, of the same, and of the other Disney princesses/heroines, when I have time. :) They're so much fun! :D
P.S. I really should post, too, about the Regency gowns I made for the Christmas ball this December. I'm afraid I always forget to post here though because I have several different google accounts and this one kind of falls into the background of the other ones. :P Oh well. I should get to that this week before I start school. :P

Monday, November 14, 2011

Fall Fashion Challenge: Day 7

Fall Fashion Challenge
Day 7: Wear a hat

I don't own any hats...I rather take the quote from You've Got Mail as my opinion about hats: "I assume it was going to buy a hat which would turn out to be a mistake, as nearly all hats are." However, there are a few hats that I really do like...and fedoras make me feel positively gangsta. ;)

Blouse - Kohl's
Slacks - Kohl's
Jacket - Kohl's
Silver chain - JCPenney's
Earrings - Kohl's
Shoes - Target
Hat - Alex's :)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Fall Fashion Challenge: Day 4

Fall Fashion Challenge:
Day 4: Your Favorite Era

Another news flash - I don't really have any clothes from my favorite eras...HOWEVER - this year for Halloween I dressed as a hippie, and made some bell-bottom jeans for the outfit. So my decade for this day is...

The 1970s!
(with a bit of a modern flair :))

Blouse - Goodwill
Shawl-thing (I can't remember the real name :P) - Sears
Jeans - Goodwill, with bells added by me with fabric from JoAnn
Platforms - Mudd, from Goodwill

~Marianne
Jewelry - Kmart

Fall Fashion Challenge: Day 3

[Skipping Day 2 for the moment because I still need to find the pair of shoes for that outfit. :P]
------------------------------
Fall Fashion Challenge
Day 3: Bold Tights

News flash: I don't own any bold tights at all. I don't even have any bold socks. :P So I just decided I would wear some bright colors - it is a summer outfit that works well on warm fall days.


Cami - JCPenney's
Blouse - thrift store ;)
Skirt - Christopher and Banks
Shoes - Target (P.S. These are my favorite shoes ever. :D)

Apologies about the grain in the pictures...for some reason, they just didn't turn out well this time. :P