2014 Skating Dress(es)

Seeing as how this is (supposed to be) a sewing blog, I feel that it is about time I start actually posting some sewing projects to it.  So far this year I have sewn five skating dresses for myself (well, one of them was actually started, and mostly finished, two years ago, so it doesn’t really count), and, as of the writing of this post, two more of the dresses remain unfinished.  By which I mean they’ve been sewn but not stoned.  A third dress is (mostly) finished, and was worn twice, but remains unphotographed.  So, basically, all of this is to say, I only really have one new dress to show you guys from regionals and nationals this year.  And, ironically, I hadn’t even intended for it to be my competition dress.  Really, I had made it just to use for testing at my home rink, and for floor practice at regionals and nationals.  But I was persuaded to stone it and use it for competition, which I did.  I really like the dress – it is ridiculously comfortable – and the drape of the fabric gives it a nice flow when I skate.  The sort of hilarious thing is that the fabric was from the Michael Levine Loft – I had barely enough to make the dress in the first place, and it probably cost me less than $2.  I mean, sure, I had to line it, and the sequin fabric I used as applique isn’t particularly cheap either, but without stones the material cost of the dress might have hit around $25, if that much.  Stones and accessories, of course, add quite a bit to the total cost of the outfit, but originally it was a pretty awesome practice dress on a budget.

So, anyway, here’s the dress!

Ta-da!  Haha, just kidding – all the fun stuff is on the other side.
See – all the sparklies!
Each flower was cut out individually and sewn on like an applique.
The main fabric is acetate slinky, which has a nice drape and flow.
I borrowed gloves at regionals, and made my own last-minute before
I left for nationals.  Not my best work, but they looked ok on the floor.
I bought this bracelet at the Gordman’s in Lincoln
and stoned it in my hotel room.  It was the perfect accent piece.

As far as my figure dress went… well, I sewed it the morning before our flight, and got it about halfway stoned before I skated my events.  But, well, this is nationals and one simply doesn’t wear an obviously unfinished dress at nationals.  So I wore my peacock dress from last year:

Still love this dress.
It was a lot of work last year… so it was nice to be
able to wear it again.
A look at how the detail continues down the side.
I still think the back of the skirt is my favorite part.

I don’t know if I would consider this a particularly successful nationals… Although I wouldn’t say that I skated terribly, I definitely didn’t skate my best, and, honestly, I was just so exhausted when I left at the start of the trip that I just wasn’t overly energetic or excited when I got there.  The scheduling was also sort of strange this year, so I didn’t get to spend as much time as I would have liked at the practice rink, and a lot of other people from my home rink were only there for a short amount of time.  The stands were (unfortunately) largely empty most of the time, which only contributed to the lackluster feel.  Overall the whole trip just felt a bit off.  The large show group I participated in (and made props for) skated well, which was exciting, and although we were the only team, we worked quite hard for our placement and our scores.  That was, unfortunately, probably the highlight of my skating for the trip.

This season, as a whole, has been rather exhausting and disappointing, for a number of reasons.  I feel like I have improved as a skater, but not enough to achieve the goals I had at the start of the season.  I’ve been skating way more this year than I have in the past, but I really think that I am going to need to reconsider my training habits for the next season – especially the work that I (need to start doing) off skates.  In the past Nationals has always energized me, and motivated me for the upcoming season.  This year the only feeling I had when it was over was exhaustion.  I don’t like to take too much time off (heck, I’ve already been back to the rink!), but I am definitely going to be taking it easy – with regards to both skating and sewing – for the next few weeks.  Maybe somewhere in there I’ll find time to take and post pictures of my other costume…

Skating pictures were purchased from the professionals at Callam Sports Photography.

11 thoughts on “2014 Skating Dress(es)

  1. Love the dresses. Any chance of a video of you spinning or turning? Just to see how they fan out when you're moving.

    Skating desires not matching performances is disheartening. I understand your dismay, having experienced similar feelings with regards stuff I do/did. It is a process and a tricky one at that.


  2. All I can say is wow!! I love all the bling. You did a real good job. Don't worry I'm sure your skating mojo will return. I myself am getting back in to sewing and you can follow my adventures here, isewiknit.blogspot.com.


  3. Wow, I'm so impressed. I've never seen anyone make a skating costume before, and it much take such patience to apply all the stones and appliques. I hope you're back in your skating groove 🙂


  4. Could you tell me what kind and where you bought the fabric for the appliques, I think they are beautiful. My son is a new rollerskater and is hoping to go to nationals this year. I would like to make a dress for his partner. Thanks


  5. The fabric for the appliques is actually a sequin design on a non-stretch mesh that I cut out and stitched onto the skating dress, then trimmed off the excess mesh to get a really fine shape around the floral designs after they were stitched on. I bought it at Haverim Behrooz (903 Maple Ave S Los Angeles, CA 90015) located on the southwest corner of 9th and Maple in the LA Fashion District. Unfortunately I don't think they have an online store or phone order options. I found something similar at Spandex World online though: http://spandexworld.com/c3/catalog/product/13422
    and they have other options too if you look around in the sequins section.


  6. Enjoy your blog so much and your skating costumes are divine. I am a sparkle-junkie…..with no excuse to use them 😥 Anyway Serai you are a very pretty lady and super brainy too…. good on you.


  7. OK, its the beginning of a new season, I know we are gearing up for out first meet, how are you doing? Hope you are back in the groove for skating and sewing up a storm? Best wishes for both! I sew the outfits for our team, we had 3 go to Nationals last year and come back with medals! I want o see what you are working on now!!


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