Pink Flamingo

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eternal magpie pink flamingo dress

Two years ago (according to Facebook, very helpful, thank you!) I made this dress. 

Can anybody tell me why I gave it to the charity shop? It looks to me like the perfect item of clothing to be wearing during this summer heatwave!

Inspired by a half-remembered Laura Ashley dress from the early 1990s that I never owned, this was intended to be worn over a set of Edwardian combinations that I never did get around to making. Although I can see the pear-embroidered hem of my bloomers just peeping out from underneath.

eternal magpie pink flamingo dress

This dress was specifically designed not to touch any part of my body, as the fibromyalgia was particularly bad at the time. (I used to have blisters when I took off my work uniform, from the seams touching my skin. Not nice.) 

You can see from the picture on the mannequin that the armholes are extremely low. This was a very common feature in early 1990s dresses that were intended to be worn with a t-shirt underneath - in fact a lot of them came with a t-shirt pattern included. 

eternal magpie pink flamingo dress - 1990s pattern

This one, which I found during one of my extensive Etsy-browsing sessions, doesn't include a t-shirt pattern but it does include a version that's a jumpsuit! According to Instagram (which is apparently my style guide now, rather than Pinterest), jumpsuits and dungarees are very popular amongst Creative Types at the moment.

I do own a pair of dungarees, but they're two sizes too big (aaah, the joys of internet shopping...) and strictly for wearing only while digging up the garden. And though I'm not usually one to jump on board a bandwagon, I do have to admit that I'm looking at that left-hand illustration and contemplating my fabric stash. Organic cotton checks, maybe? Or a floral duvet cover?

I don't tend to buy many sewing patterns on Etsy these days - most often I'll see a style that I like, and then figure out how to draft an approximation of the pattern for myself. Partly that's because so few patterns are available in my size, and partly because the cost of shipping from the USA (where so many vintage patterns seem to be) has increased quite dramatically - particularly since Etsy has started charging fees to sellers on their shipping costs and forced people to put up their prices.

Anyway... I am extremely tempted by this one. It's reasonably priced, it's in my size, and it's in the UK so no extortionate postage costs, and it should arrive pretty quickly. 

1990s dungarees, at the age of forty-four. Shall I? 

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  1. Bunny

    I don't fit anything anymore. I am not sure how much weight I have gained but it is a significant amount. I find myself altering plus size patterns to get things big enough and it seems like I always forget to alter some area and get to spend time with the stitch ripper and cutting a new piece.

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  2. eternal magpie

    @Bunny - the fabric was a duvet cover, bought on Ebay! I bet there's another one out there, if I have a bit of a search. My one and only 1990s Laura Ashley dress was a velvet evening dress that my Mum took me to a sample sale to buy, before I went to Uni in 1993. I loved that dress SO MUCH. I sometimes see the floral dresses, and occasionally jumpsuits, pop up in my local vintage shop, but sadly I no longer fit into any of Laura Ashley's 1990s sizes!

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  3. Bunny

    I had and wore the original Laura Ashley dress (thank you thrift shops) and loved it. It was the perfect dress. The original was made from something similar to very fine flannelette. I think the skirt was slightly longer and fuller (more like the one in the pattern picture) and it had pockets. I hate that it finally went to pieces with wear. Note that the bodice was fully lined and that may have contributed to its ability to support the longer, fuller skirt. It's a shame you got rid of the flamingo dress. You need to find more of that fabric, I love the bright unabashed pinkness of it.

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