Gertie’s version was amazing, and I thought “oh, I need that pattern! That dress would be so perfect as an every day dress… or even a special occasion dress!”
Then she sewed it a second time. I was sold! However, I didn’t pick up the pattern right away. In fact, I waited for over a year to buy it.
If you Google “cambie dress” a ton of images come up… I think my favourite is this one. It even works as a wedding dress! This, dear readers, is why I finally bought the pattern… Remember my post about sewing for our wedding? I said I was having trouble with the FBA on my dress, and tried other patterns. The Cambie was my safety net. I could find lots of tutorials for doing a FBA on this dress, so if worst came to worst, I could make this dress work for my needs.
Obviously, I managed to make my 1950’s reproduction work for the wedding dress, so the Cambie pattern didn’t get sewn… until November, when I decided that I needed to make the dress, immediately if not sooner. I had this fantastic quilting cotton that I bought at Fabricana for way too much money on a trip there with my friend Andreabefore she moved away… the fabric was earmarked for a dress, but I didn’t know what dress I’d make with it.
Well, Cambie was a perfect match for the fabric. I decided against the sweetheart neckline, because I am not a fan of that neckline for myself, so I followed Tasia’s super simple tutorial for the “slightly less sweet” Cambie dress.
I must have learned a thing or two about doing a FBA while making my wedding dress, because aside from a tiny bit of tweaking with the dart points, my FBA was perfect on the first try with this dress. The only challenge I did have with it was with the shoulders, which were several inches too long.
My dress made its first appearance at a brunch that my husband and I went to before Christmas, and I got several compliments on it. Cambie is fully lined too, so even in quilting cotton, it feels luxurious and expensive. I haven’t made another yet, but I’m definitely going to. I love the A-line skirt on this dress, because it has pockets, and it’s very grown up. I’m not usually a big fan of gathered skirts, because they can come off looking a bit childish, and I’m now past 40, so as far as my wardrobe is concerned, gathers have a time and place… like in a wedding dress. For every day wear, I feel a bit out of place in a gathered skirt.
Another great thing about this dress is that it looks fantastic with fitted sweaters. It’s really an all-season dress, in spite of it being sleeveless. It also shows off my owl tattoo, which I always feel is a shame to cover up, because looking at it makes me feel so fantastic.
The only thing I’m not 100% happy about is that I should have made one size smaller, as there’s a bit of extra width on the bodice. I bought the paper pattern of this dress, and in the future, I’ll buy the PDF so that I can cut different sizes without having to either trace the pattern or buy a new one, because that’s just wasteful.
In fact, right now I’m working on a rusty orange sweater that will be a perfect complement to this dress… but that’s another post for another day.