U.F.O -abbreviation for Un-Finished Object. [noun] A sewing term.




Oh yes.

If you sew you have ’em.

They lurk in closets or huddle in bags. If left long enough they transform from UFO into a WTF was I thinking? or an OMG I remember this! and get cut into quilt pieces if they are lucky or simply binned if not. This past Friday I had a pre-summer closet shuffle, a.k.a. What-Fits-This-Year and I found two UFOs from last summer.

But isn’t it wonderful how if you take a break from a project, anywhere from overnight to ahem a year! and look at it with fresh eyes that whatever seemed wrong with it isn’t such a big deal after all?  That’s how it works for me most of the time anyway. A sleeve suddenly fits in perfectly…. the pattern correction needed is blindingly obvious…. the pocket placement is clear. A long break did the trick for these two.

weldons gif by veravenus.com

This red linen dress  from a 1960’s Weldons pattern that I got for 25 pence was a spur of the moment make. So simple, a piece of cake yet turned into a nightmare. Most of the problems were to do with my posture and needing to shorten the back bodice length (shorter than most patterns) and lengthen the front (prominent bust). Simple enough if I’d made proper pattern alterations but I didn’t.  Then the bust darts just wouldn’t play nice: too high, too long, uneven… I gave it two days of undivided attention then into the back of my closet it went. (I know I know I should’a done a toile but I don’t listen to my own advice) So Saturday it was assessed, the dart issues corrected in 10 minutes flat, a zip added and finally it was finished. No big deal after all.   VV60's dress



Next up out of the closet was this saucy sarong dress, abandoned at its first fitting last year. Why? Because I wasn’t paying attention and had simply cut the bodice waaaay too small and the skirt was an experiment that didn’t go quite as planned. Fortunately I had just enough fabric left to cut a new bodice, re-cut the back skirt as the new under front and cut new backs. Tada….6 hours later done. I’ve wanted a “Tiki” dress for years. Where was this dress when I was thirty years younger but hey, better late than never 😉  I added a wide boned inner-waistband, not talking comfort here. It’s all about the shape.  I adapted it from one of those swimsuit patterns

that yes,

I      am     still      working on.


So two UFOs saved from the scrap heap. Hooray.

VVsarong dress

In the meantime while it is not yet hot enough for those dresses  I have been wearing this sample dress from the sewing project I designed for the April issue of Making. Soft rayon jersey, cheerful colours, super comfortable…. I could do with a couple more of these! It’s not retro I know…. but add a wiggle skirt with a drape instead of the flared skirt, reshape the neckline from a V into a sweetheart and it could be.VVjersey dress free pattern

I’m off to USA to catch up with family for a few weeks and just wanted to leave you with something for the nicer weather and so the pattern pdf is now posted on my VVFree page. As usual with my free patterns it’s only in the one size (pic below has info) but not tricky to grade up following the Threads guide -link  there on the right sidebar. It’s a fairly easy make, no darts or zips. All sewn on a domestic sewing machine with just basic stretch stitches.

VV jerseyDressFreePatternEnjoy.

16 thoughts on “U.F.O -abbreviation for Un-Finished Object. [noun] A sewing term.

  1. Thank you so much for all your lovely posts, and especially for the granny pants pattern! I have been eyeing them for ages, and recently took the plunge, along with a bunch of other knicker patterns – muslinned them all out of old tshirts, and this was so cute and comfy that it was the first to be made in “real” fabric. I don’t have 39 hips, so I enlarged them at the side line, and it worked perfectly. Only alteration I did was to stitch down the one (yeah!) seam so it wouldn’t annoy me. LOVE!!!

    1. Using old Tshirts is a great idea ! Thanks for that and for letting me know the pattern worked well for you too.

  2. Oh dear, WTFs. One of mine came (painfully and insipidly) to mind when I read that. A vogue jacket pattern with cut on sleeves that was so wrong for me, executed in rather nice wool fabric except for the pepto bismo pink color. Took me ages to bin that, somewhere in some reality I’m tall and slender enough to pull it off, but not this one. Anyway, loved these dresses and *especially* your Tiki dress.

  3. That red dress is just beautiful. And the sarong dress!! OMG, shades of Dorothy Lamour! If that is you modeling it, all I can say is, “Hubba, hubba!” That is an extremely bodacious dress. Thank you for sharing the encouragement. I, too, have my UFOs and WTF projects. Now, I can hold my head high, knowing I am in good company. Best Wishes, Carla P.

    1. Thanks Carla! We can all be assured even the most famous designers must have UFOs… they certainly do have WTFs from time to time 😉

  4. Not only was it a thrill to read your post, and see your gorgeous dresses, but you posted a fab free pattern! Amazing! I’m so grateful! Thanks so much and have a great USA trip.

  5. Grand children are great for half finished projects!!! ” That doesn’t sound right does it !!!” But “cock ups” and “mishap”s can be cut down and made into clothes for “Little Legs”. I recently made a lovely duck egg wool dress from a skirt I tried to make nearly 30 years ago. The fabric cost a fortune at the time but because I didn’t know how to put an invisible zip in. It never got finished. I couldn’t find it in me to throw it out. So it now has a new purpose as a sweat little pinafore…
    I love the free pattern I’m sure it will flatter many figures.
    Enjoy your holiday,

    1. Lol, very true! I used to make a lot of things for my kids by cutting up some of my UFOs… and then turned to quilting instead when they put their feet down and wanted ‘store bought’. It’s fun making for little people 🙂

  6. Wow those dresses look great! I am glad I am not the only one with UFO’s – you are right though its amazing how a bit of time can allow the puzzle pieces come together! Thanks for your generosity with the beautiful jersey dress, it looks like a great project! Enjoy your trip to the US.

    1. Thanks, I am really looking forward to the sun!
      I used to have tons of UFOs …now I make myself either fix/finish or be realistic and figure I must have learned *something* from the mistake 😉

      1. I have greatly reduced my buying compulsion by seeing projects through first. I wonder if it is the same with all creative processes, there is always something that you will do differently next time?
        Love your blog, it is so inspiring – your gorgeous french knickers are on my to do list, because they are so perfect for summer!

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