Simplicity 2444


Simplicity 2444, Dressing Your Truth Type One

I’ve got an old birdhouse in the garden. I’ve had it for years… it was one of those things I picked up second hand. I sometimes nose around garage sales and thrift stores and buy questionable goods and call them garden art. When we moved into our current home, my birdhouse sat forlornly on the back stairs. For years. Last fall, during my autumn yard clean-up, I decided it was time to let it go…but. I couldn’t. so. I didn’t. I hung it in the wisteria vine and promised to deal with it come spring. Well, spring blossomed, and with it came a lovely pair of chickadees. And yes! They chose that old and tired birdhouse to be their honeymoon cottage. I was surprised, delighted, and thoroughly conflicted about the fact that my little bird hotel (they don’t stay long) was smack dab in the middle of cat country. I have two cats. Two cats that go outside with moderate supervision. We have a fenced in garden, and my cats are, for the most part, disinclined to jump over, crawl through, or otherwise attempt to explore beyond their confines. And why would they? Especially given the fact that their provider of all things earthly has now generously provided front row, interactive, live entertainment. Sigh. I assigned myself to guard duty…lounging on a nearby chaise…with a book…and a bevy…I know, I know, it was a tough gig, but someone had to do it. I also set up a little perimeter fence underneath the birdhouse in an effort to give the young parents at least a little privacy. I imagine it would be disconcerting having a keen eyed cat sitting directly below one’s doorstep 24/7. Not that my cats are out there 24/7…but I do like to dramatize my boring stories at least a little. And this story really has no drama. Which is actually very good. Because cats and birds and drama in the same story has a sinister sound to it. Mama and Papa bird nested, and then proceeded to feed and nurture those chattering baby chickadees incessantly for a couple of weeks. Then…BAM…they literally flew the coop. The nest, once a very busy hub, was suddenly very still. The very next morning the young birds were spotted sitting in our bamboo patch, fluffier versions of their parents. It was as if they wanted us to know they had their wings and all was well.

So yes, I have been a bit bird obsessed lately. If you’re a blogger, and you’ve posted anything bird patterned recently, you probably knew this. As much as one can swoon in a comment, I have been swooning. Most, errr let’s make that all, of your bird patterns are pretty…pretty birds, pretty colours. I adore them. Truly. I do. With that being said, this cartoonish print squawked hello the minute I saw it. I tried. I tried really, really hard to ignore it, but even when I was at the far end of the store, outta sight, I could hear it calling me. And. Sometimes you just have to give in. Just like my I’m a Bird in Paradise Dress; this dress, my Birds of a Feather Dress, Simplicity 2444, makes me smile. Big. It’s whimsical, it’s colourful, and it’s me. Not too much to say about the construction. The pattern is identical to my previous bird dress, with one exception. I inserted a centered zipper instead of an invisible one. Why? I wanted a matching turquoise zipper, that’s all. sez me.

Okay, real quick now and then I’ll let ya go…I got a crazy case of hives last week, and I’ve been beyond itchy. I think it might be new laundry detergent. I usually buy Tide Free and Gentle powder, but I bought the liquid TF&G. The grown-up me knows not to scratch, but, seriously, look at the dress I just sewed. I think I need to wear oven mitts secured to my wrists with duct tape. Although not entirely gone, they did resolve well enough to allow me to thoroughly enjoy seeing Spamalot this weekend…it’s a hilariously funny musical comedy spawned from Monty Python and The Holy Grail. Oh My Goodness! We did laugh out loud a lot! I’ve got a new striped, yes STRIPED, sewing project ready to go! I’m planning to sew a summer sundress, and I’m still on the search for the perfect palazzo pants fabric. Weather’s been…meh…and…the wisteria vine seems to be dying. We can’t understand it. It had a great show of blooms, and then, just, nothing…not much leaf development, and what’s there looks limp and lifeless. I am trying look on the bright side of life ala Spamalot, but things are not looking that bright in that corner of the garden right now.

Happy Canada Day to my Canadian Peeps!
And an early Happy 4th of July to my American Cousins!

Dress :: Me-Made Simplicity 2444
Shoes :: Nine West

Linking up with The Sewcialists for Oonapalooza


  • Reply Suzanne Carillo Style Files July 1, 2014 at 6:36 am

    Happy Canada Day! Hope you are kicking back somewhere, enjoying some good wine and a bbq.

    What a fun dress! And such bright summery colours.

    I can't believe those chickadees chose the old birdhouse. That is so sweet.

    I am a HUGE bird lover. For 20 years we had birds. First cockatiels and then LoveBirds. the LoveBirds had 2 babies and one of them lived with us for 16 years. He was smarter than the dog and had the nicest personality. I used to design with him on my shoulder, or with him snuggling up under my chin. I miss him dearly. So that is me getting all sentimental about loving birds : )

    Are you still searching for a great kimono?

    So sad we don't live closer. It would be fun to get together again.


  • Reply M @ My Closet Catalogue July 1, 2014 at 7:19 am

    Only you can make this dress look kitschy and cool and not weird and campy. J'adore! And Spamalot was a hoot, I agree, but if you get the chance, go see The Book of Mormon. May be thoroughly racy and offensive, depending on your value system, but I'd never laughed so hard.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 1, 2014 at 7:22 am

    …YES! Happy Canada Day back atcha ya! We've got some fine weather today, and wine and good eats is on the menu…and not much else. 😉

    That is so cool that your lovebirds had babies! And lived on with you for so many years! My friend was pet sitting a lovebird, and the bird would lie and on her back and let me friend stroke her belly! Now I can totally envision you with a birdie on your shoulder.

    Yes, still keeping my eyes open to finding the FIND, LOL.

    I'm gonna fire off an email to you this week! xo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 1, 2014 at 7:27 am

    Hey Maricel! Okay, I've heard The Book of Mormon is FUNNY, and have wanted to see it…but I don't know much about it. I guess I should have expected it to be offensive to some, 🙁 , but then, I guess most topics are.

  • Reply Anonymous July 1, 2014 at 7:34 am

    Delightful. Joyful. Fun. I am so glad you enjoy a colorful wardrobe. I so look forward to your creations. Happy sewing!

  • Reply Connie July 1, 2014 at 8:08 am

    We all know the traumas of being cat owners. We love them, they are furry and cuddly but they are murderers! We're bird lovers around here, too. The wild kind. I could never bear to put one onto a cage! In fact all of the streets in my neighborhood are named after birds. I live on Blackbird Circle which I love because besides being birdy also sounds a little scary. NOW. Onto your dress. Love The Fabric Choice. It really is YOU. And I just cut out the pattern for that exact same dress. I'm off to Joann's to get more fabric today. Mine will be rather more dreary than yours and quite a bit longer, hence the “more fabric” situation. Everything you do just fills me with joy and inspiration. I can't thank you enough. XxxxxxOOOOO

  • Reply My Kurves July 1, 2014 at 8:08 am

    I look forward to reading your posts; they are so inspiring and cute. Just as your dress is inspiring & too cute. You look girly and flirty in this dress and of course I love the colors. looking forward to more. . .

  • Reply Carelia Moran July 1, 2014 at 9:22 am

    Happy Canada Day!! This is another beautiful dress on you. Your posts can really bright anyone's day. Have a wonderful week Sue.

  • Reply dreamingofavonlea July 1, 2014 at 10:13 am

    LOVE that! It's so bright and cheerful! Great fit on you too x

  • Reply Louise Perry July 1, 2014 at 10:39 am

    Sorry to hear you are scratching madly, that sucks. On the bright side your dress is fabulous, so bright and cheery. When I was a little girl I wondered if there were bird estate agents! Showing prospective birds different trees bushes and houses!

  • Reply pastcaring July 1, 2014 at 11:35 am

    That bird print is so fabulous; bright and beautiful and fun, just like you, cousin Sue! The dress is a triumph, and you would never know you feel itchy and scratchy!
    I'm pleased your garden birds managed to evade the cats' claws. We haven't had any casualties yet this summer, courtesy of Charlie the Killer Cat (the other three don't seem to bother) but I am sure it's only a matter of time… xxx

  • Reply arish July 1, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    ¡Qué alegre es tu vestido! me gusta mucho y la historia que has contado del jardín es entrañable. KISSES.

  • Reply Vix July 1, 2014 at 1:02 pm

    You look so happy, relaxed and cheery in that amazing dress I'd never have guessed you were all scratchy and sore. The print is a delight.
    We've rescued a sweet little sparrow from the cats this week – fortunately quite unharmed despite his traumatic capture. xxx

  • Reply Val S July 1, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    I was just suggesting to Shelley that we should have a week-long North American holiday from the 1st to the 4th! Let's start a petition!

    So glad your bird story ended happily, and your bird dress came out beautifully! And, seriously, has anyone asked you to do modeling? You're a natural!

  • Reply Faye Lewis July 1, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    What a lovely happy dress.

  • Reply Trina July 1, 2014 at 2:56 pm

    Say Hello to Paradise and Happiness! Yes, this dress is truly you, it screams happy, whimsical, and colorful, just like you. I just love the fact that you can pick a pattern, the fabric and then make it tailored to your every need, incredible talent.

  • Reply beassewingadventures July 1, 2014 at 10:46 pm

    Happy belated national day to you. We don't really have anything like that in England.

    Looooooove this dress- it's so colourful and the birds are really cute!

  • Reply Daisy July 2, 2014 at 1:30 am

    The dress is very beautiful! What a good match!

  • Reply MIS PAPELICOS Sacramento July 2, 2014 at 4:42 am

    I not only say hello, I say I WANT YOU pretty dress, come to mama, ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
    You are sooooooooooooooooo wonderfullllllllllllllllll
    Great scenery too, dear Sue
    I hope you are getting ready to join Share-in-Style: Denim next Monday the 7th?

  • Reply No fear of fashion July 2, 2014 at 5:57 am

    Oh Suzanne, how funny, how sweet, that bird for so long and on your shoulder…..ahhhhh.

  • Reply No fear of fashion July 2, 2014 at 6:01 am

    I am glad you had a link to your other dress in this post. As I was puzzled. I thought: “Hey..?? I have seen this, haven't I? No I haven't … strange..” When I got to your link everything fell into place.
    I agree with you, it is a fun dress and totally suits you. You are also (again) great with the right shoes and bracelets and earrings. Well done my dear.
    What still puzzles me, is you say, you inserted a centered zipper instead of an invisible one. But the picture you show us, is by an invisible zipper, isn't it?

  • Reply Glenda July 2, 2014 at 7:16 am

    Sue, you are a magnificent story teller. I loved reading about the birds, and could see play by play everything in my head.

    As always, you look happy-go-lucky, light, fun, spirited, quirky and lovely. I love dresses cut like this. They seem to work well on the petite frame.

    Oh yes, I live by Tide Free. Anything else makes me want to peel my skin off.

  • Reply Merche Martinez July 2, 2014 at 9:33 am

    Love both the dress and the story. It is a joy to read your blog, Sue. You are so much fun!!! Lots of love from Spain!!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:20 am

    Your comment just makes me smile. big. Thank you!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:23 am

    Blackbird Circle does have a slightly Hitchcockesque ring to it….mwaahahaha…

    How cool is that, that you're sewing the same pattern!! I'm excited for you! And you will light up the dress brilliantly just being you Connie! Happy Sewing!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:24 am

    Thank you so much….and now I just want to dive into your avatar photo! I've had a resurgence with the hives situation…:(….and that ocean looks so soothing!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:25 am

    Thanks for the bright wishes Carelia! Hope your celebration is colourful as well!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:25 am

    Thank you so much! It's great sewing patterns multiple times…no fit issues to fiddle with.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:27 am

    Sigh, and they were getting better, but I got hit with another batch. So now you've got me wondering if birds do 'shop around' for their bit of real estate, LOL. Could be true.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:29 am

    Thanks Curtise! Yes, you've got some tree climbers in your brood, serious instincts many cats have. My cats are rarely alone in the garden, but then again I also know it only takes a moment for a cat to catch a bird. Not sure that mine have the inclination, and hope they don't.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:30 am

    Thank you Arish. Pretty soon I won't need to translate your words!!!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:30 am

    Thanks Vix! Yeah for the save!!!!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:32 am

    Yes, that would work for me beautifully!

    Thanks for the compliments, but I'm seriously quite bad at the photo thing. Glen has to take a LOT of photos. I thought it would get easier as time went by, but I still look goofy in half the shots. Oh, and I need the light just so, LOL.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:32 am

    Thank you Faye!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:33 am

    Thanks Trina! It does represent, doesn't it!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Thank you, thank you! I was going to say that you have the Queen's birthday, but then we have that here too, LOL. I guess one of the perks of being the new country means a stat holiday. We're 147 years old this year!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Thank you. I was a little obsessed with trying to get the back bodice pieces to match!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:35 am

    Thanks so much Sacramento! Thanks for the heads up on Share in Style.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:38 am

    hahaha…yes very similar, but not! The zipper in this dress is a regular zipper. If you look closely at the photo, although hard to see, you may notice the visible lines of stitching. When sewing an invisible zipper, the zip and all the sewing is not seen.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:39 am

    Thank you so much Glenda! Just curious if you use the liquid Tide Free. This was my first try with the liquid version, and of course, I'm afraid to try it again 'cause I'm afraid I'll get worse hives.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 2, 2014 at 10:40 am

    Thank you so much Merche! Can't help but sigh when I think of you in your lovely part of the world. Ah!

  • Reply Flo July 2, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Reply Flo July 2, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    Very cute dress, such fun fabric! Glad to hear that everything worked out well at Chez Chickadee. We have woodpeckers that carved out a new home in the utility pole in front of our house, I never realized what noisy birds they were over and above their pecking!

  • Reply MIS PAPELICOS Sacramento July 3, 2014 at 9:17 am

    No, it is just a way to keep the streets shady

  • Reply Hana - Velvet Ribbon July 3, 2014 at 5:55 pm

    Ohhh… I love your dress!! It's so pretty and summery. Love to read the story behind the dress too, thank you for making me smile 🙂

  • Reply Joni James July 3, 2014 at 9:26 pm

    Beautiful sewing job! I love your choice in the playful fabric.
    I just adore birds. We have an enormouse hedge outside and there are many bird families that live in there. I think I can even hear the mothers teaching lessons to the little ones and singing them bedtime lullabies. They're so sweet!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 3, 2014 at 9:38 pm

    In a previous home, we had a big laurel hedge that housed many happy birds. Recently, a family of Eurasian collared doves have moved into the hood, and I love their coo-hooing. Makes me think of Maui. Thanks for stopping by Joni!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 3, 2014 at 9:39 pm

    Thanks Hana! I miss our daily hello's during Me-Made-May!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 3, 2014 at 9:40 pm

    Thanks Sacramento…

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 3, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    I KNOW! They are a chatter-y bird, aren't they? And the pecking sound! Still! They always give me fond memories of Woody Woodpecker, LOL.

  • Reply Margo B July 4, 2014 at 4:55 am

    Such a fun dress Sue!! So you. 🙂 Thanks for making me smile this morning..oh and Happy (belated) Canada Day!!!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 4, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    Happy Canada Day Margo!!!

  • Reply oona balloona July 5, 2014 at 6:00 am

    sue, you crazy young chickadee, i just caught up on the last two posts i missed and YOU ARE HILARIOUS. and looking gorgeous!!!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 5, 2014 at 7:13 am

    ….mwaaaahahahah…with age, comes humour, LOL.

  • Reply Fickle Sense July 5, 2014 at 10:19 am

    Love the fabric. I am bird crazy too! I also had a rather itchy week, went camping and got like 30 mosquito bites. I feel your pain!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 5, 2014 at 11:08 am

    YIKES! We's birds of a feather. Funny, my body reminds me of summer camp years ago…mosquito bites everywhere. Thanks for popping by!

  • Reply Shirl July 5, 2014 at 3:10 pm

    Hi Sue,

    Your blog is not coming into my Hotmail. Not sure why. I saw that you had a new post when I checked John's facebook page. Love the chickadee story. Would like to have seen a pic of that birdie hotel, but you were probably too busy sewing that lovely dress!


  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas July 5, 2014 at 10:36 pm

    Weird that you're not getting your emails. Maybe they're going to a spam folder? I wanted to add a photo of the bird house, but the wisteria is looking so nearly dead right now that I couldn't get an attractive shot. Must attempt it again though!

  • Reply Ariane Lasalle July 7, 2014 at 9:10 am

    Hi Sue!

    It has been a long time since i left a comment
    First i like the dress, i love everything you do
    It's so well made and whimsical and colorful
    I love birds so does Mr D , in fact he's kind of a bird expert in his way
    I have a bird age on the véranda that i can not get rid of

    Lots of Hugs


  • Reply sabine July 8, 2014 at 9:48 am

    Happy Canada day Sue!
    What a lovely and playful dress. You look so cute and happy in it! I love it.
    Sabine xxx

  • Reply The Style Crone July 8, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    A gorgeous dress on you, especially with the addition of the green pumps. I'm sure that you increase the happiness of everyone who sees you in this ensemble!

  • Reply No fear of fashion July 9, 2014 at 11:19 am

    Wow… that is indeed invisible.

  • Reply Kristin Buchholz-MacKillop July 9, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    OMG….we need to get a “love” button on here…like on Facebook…

  • Reply dan July 11, 2014 at 1:03 am

    That is a lovely story with a happy end! ( with cats around you can never know!) I love animals of every kind and birds are very cute! I have spent part of my childhood in the country, and remember a robin who used to eat the leftovers in the bowl of my German Shepher dog… and also remember I was very worried that something bad could happen!

    About the dress now… the fabric pattern is delightfull and you have sewed another wonderful, summery dress! The shoes are perfect with it, and you look radiant!!

  • Reply Heather July 13, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    I love this dress, and I love bird prints too! You look amazing in this colourful print and I especially love it with the green shoes! Sorry to hear about the itchies!

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