Saturday, 5 November 2016

Style Arc Adeline Dress (aka The Recovery Dress)

Style Arc Adeline Dress
Sewing has taken a back seat over the last couple of months as I have had some serious health issues to deal with which I will share at the end of this post if you are interested*. And now, onto the Adeline Dress, a recent pattern release from Style Arc which I sewed up during my recovery.


Style Arc Adeline Dress

I have been a bit of a rebel and used a textured silk cotton knit from Knitwit in an olive green, (this colour has sold out but other colours are available), when the recommended fabric was a woven. I thought this would work because it has a low stretch factor and a nice drape.



These photos were taken after the dress had been worn all day at work, hense the wrinkles. The Adeline dress is a little longer than I expected, but I quite like it. The hem is finished with a facing and I did find it a little restrictive and it could perhaps benefit from a centre back vent or split. I may incorporate this in the next one. 



You can see the high/low hemline in the photo above. This is quite fashionable at the moment, but I'm not sure I'm a huge fan. I think this dress would look just as good with a level hem line.



The shoulder seams were stabilised with some cotton tape to stop them stretching out, as I was using a knit fabric. The neckline and hemline were finished with a facing which was then top stitched to keep it in place, but also adds a nice decorative element. I love the cuffs on the sleeves and I have secured them with a few hand stitches to hold them in place.



I decided to add some decorative buttons to the pockets, as the fabric was looking a little drab. I found these cute orange buttons at the local fabric shop. They are made from Corozo, a natural product which I thought was quite fitting for my silk cotton dress.



This how I styled it for work yesterday. Thanks to Mum for taking these photos for me in her beautiful garden. She did an awesome job and I had 97 photos to choose from, not the 3 or 4 I usually get when hubby is behind the camera. (And this was the first time she had used a smart phone to take photos too. We had such a laugh and after all I do have plenty to be happy about now).

Happy sewing

*I was diagnosed with bowel cancer in early September. This came as a huge shock to me and my family. It is very confronting when faced with your own mortality. I have decided to share my experience to help create awareness of this insidious disease.  

I casually mentioned to my GP (on a totally unrelated visit) that I had noticed I was passing a little blood when using the toilet. She referred me to the local surgeon for a colonoscopy. It took a month to get in to see him. As I have no private health insurance, he put me on the public hospital waiting list for the procedure. This took another two and a half months before I had the test on 2/9/16. 

Everything happened very quickly after that. I was sent for further tests...a CT scan and an MRI. There did not appear to be any spread of the tumour to any other organs. The local Surgeon referred me to a Colorectal Surgeon in Sydney, due to the low location of my tumour, and I had an appointment with him a week later. He booked me in for surgery on 30/9/16. The surgery (an ultra low anterior resection) went well. Due to the skill of the surgeon, the operation was done laparoscopically (keyhole) and I did not require an illiostomy, so no "bag" to deal with. After spending eight days in Westmead hospital, I was sent home to recover.  

I then had to wait almost three weeks before I received the pathology results... a rather nervous wait. However, I received good news...no cancer cells were detected in the associated lymph nodes, therefore I require no further treatment. I couldn't have hoped for a better outcome. Early detection is the key to beating this disease so I urge you to act promptly and get any symptoms checked without delay. It may just save your life.

64 comments:

  1. So glad to hear of your great recovery and quick attention, although some may think that was slow. {I too don't have private insurance (don't believe in it-if we didn't subsidise it more money would go to public hospitals) }. The key is early detection and being proactive. It's very considerate of you to share your story. About the dress, I like the fabric and agree a straight hem would be really nice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope by sharing my story I can encourage others to act promptly and get any symptoms investigated. I didn't act immediately and I have certainly regreted that. Thanks for your comments about the dress too.

      Delete
  2. I am sorry to hear of your recent bout of ill health - I wondered what had happened to you. As you say, bowel cancer is a very serious condition, so I am glad you took note of the blood and mentioned it to your GP. Everyone over 50 needs to be aware of the need to test for bowel cancer, but this does not always pick it up. I am glad you had an uneventful surgery, and that you do not have to wear a bag and that you are in the all clear. I am sure you now have a new appreciation of life. And your sewing skills seem to still be as sharp as ever - sometimes we can get rusty if we don't practice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Sarah Liz. I ignored the bowel screening test kit that arrived in the mail around my 50th Birthday. Something I certainly regret. My tumour could have been discovered a couple of years earlier. The surgeon told me it had probably been there for 3 or 4 years. I lost my sewing mojo during my illness but it is coming back now. I completed another dress over the weekend.

      Delete
  3. I'm sorry for what you have been through regarding your health. That must have been a terrifying time for you. What a relief to know it hadn't spread and you required no further treatment! Wishing you the best of health from now :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Siobhan. It was a very worrying time. I certainly have a new appreciation for life now.

      Delete
  4. Jean so sorry to hear about your health problems it must have been very frightening. So glad you are ok and on the road to recovery. Your dress looks great on you. Best wishes,barbara

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much Barbara. It certainly was a frightening time and I have been blessed to have had such a good outcome.

      Delete
  5. I'm so sorry you had to go thru so much ,but glad the outcome is good news . Love your dress & hope you have lots of energy for more sewing !!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you MaryEllen. I can feel my sewing energy coming back and I have a few ideas floating around in my head.

      Delete
  6. Thank goodness you found it early and have had such a good outcome. You always look so healthy, so I'm sure your lifestyle was a factor in your quick recovery. I'm so pleased to see your smiling face in the pictures. I love this dress and the fabric is gorgeous. Lots of love xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Megan. My diagnosis was such a shock. I don't smoke, only drink occasionally, I'm not hugely overweight, and I eat a healthy diet with little processed foods. I mistakenly thought I could never get cancer, but this is an insideous disease and can strike anyone, anytime. I have been extremely lucky and I have a new appreciation for life, that's for sure. I have a lot to smile about and I have been enjoying getting back into sewing.

      Delete
  7. Jean, your dress is beautiful. I'm so sorry you had to go though that health scare, but relieved to hear that you are ok! Thinking of you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Meg. I just hope by sharing my experience I can help someone else. I have been overwhelmed by the love and support I have received from family, friends, work colleagues and now the sewing community.

      Delete
  8. I'm glad you're doing well!

    ReplyDelete
  9. What a rough time. I'm so sorry. I am also sorry you had such a wait for treatment, but glad that you don.'t need further treatment - that is awesome. Thank you for the public health reminder too.
    Your dress looks great and I looove the buttons. Brilliant touch.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Lyndle. I have been extremely lucky, but unfortunately that is not the case for everyone. I'm glad you like the buttons. They add a bit of interest and I thought the bright orange gave the olive green a bit of a lift.

      Delete
  10. Ps 97 photos! Your mum is awesome! Sounds like you had fun :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes I agree. I might have to get her to take all my blog photos, plus she has a beautiful garden to use as a backdrop.

      Delete
  11. Congrats on not having to get an ostomy! And the dress looks great.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I was almost disappointed when I woke up after the surgery and realised that I didn't have a bag. I had done so much research and was mentally prepared for it. I am glad now though.

      Delete
  12. I'm so glad to know you have come out of your health issue so well, thanks for sharing your experience. The dress looks good too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Paola. I just hope I have been able to spread some awareness about this terrible disease, and I'm glad you like the dress too.

      Delete
  13. Sorry for the worry you've been through but I am so glad you've had a great result. Thanks for posting about this. Today - actually today - I had the conversation with my husband about doing the bowelscreen test and he wasn't going to do it. Well, I'm off to have a chat with him.
    I look forward to seeing more of the lovely clothes you make.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I regret not doing the bowel screen test. My cancer would have been picked up much earlier. I have been lucky with my outcome, but not everyone is this fortunate. Hopefully I will be blogging my sewing a little more regularly from now on.

      Delete
  14. Hi Jean,I am so pleased you have made a full recovery. I always follow your blog and I was wondering why you hadn't posted in a while. Your Recovery Dress looks very nice on you and no doubt it will always be a bit special now. I hope you continue to get better and keep sewing your lovely clothes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you very much Helen59. I am planning to stay very healthy and to continue sewing my own clothes.

      Delete
  15. Brave woman! Thank you for your disclosure and wish you well with the physical recovery but more importantly the emotional and psychological ones as well.
    You're looking great - more colour Jean, more colour.....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Ruth. 'What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger' so they say. I have a new appreciation of life and I have plenty to smile about. This dress is a bit drab...that's why I added the orange buttons. My next make is a little more colourful.

      Delete
  16. So pleased to hear that you have made it through such a scary experience and are well now. Thank you for sharing it with us. Hope you continue to stay well and keep sewing those lovely garments.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Kathy. I entend to stay healthy and keep sewing so stay tuned.

      Delete
  17. So glad to hear you are doing well again! I had noticed you'd gone missing on Instagram and your blog and wondered how you were doing. The dress looks lovely on you, good to see you smiling!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Anne-Rose. I lost all my interest in sewing during this stressful time but it is returning now, and I have plenty to smile about.

      Delete
  18. Well, you are looking great - congratulations for winning the fight! Thanks for sharing your story - and your lovely recovery dress.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you R Trittel. I am feeling pretty great now, with a whole new outlook on life.

      Delete
  19. So glad to hear that you are doing well. Yes, early detection is key. Thank you for sharing your story with us. I wish you continued good health. Your dress looks great as does everything you sew. I enjoy reading your blog posts very much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Lucy. I'm glad you enjoy reading my blog posts, as I enjoy reading yours as well. You make some beautiful garments.

      Delete
  20. Another Stylearc triumph! I am so pleased that you happened to mention your symptoms to your doctor and that the outcome was so great. I am of advancing years so got the free bowel screening test in the mail. Imagine my horror when it came back positive! I swear that this saved my life. Everyone should do a screening test as a matter of routine in my opinion. Thank you for sharing and raising awareness.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Sue. I'm sorry to hear that you have had a scare too. Hope all is well now. I certainly regret ignoring my free bowel screen testing kit. Lesson learned!

      Delete
  21. Oh my gosh, so glad to hear you are ok but I imagine it's been a very tough time for you and your family lately. I thought this pattern looked like a shapeless sack when I first saw the line drawing but you look so great in this, especially styled with the scarf and boots.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Kristy. It has been a very stressful and anxious time for all the family but we are so relieved at the great outcome. I love the dress too and I think the drapey fabric helped make it look less sack like.

      Delete
  22. You certainly do have plenty to be happy about! I am sorry to hear you have been unwell and pleased you are feeling better now!

    Your dress looks really lovely. It is such a nice fit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Andrea. Sewing friends are the best. I am pleased with the fit of the dress, not sure about the dipped hem though.

      Delete
  23. Hello Jean, I am so happy to hear of your early detection. Prayers for a complete recovery.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lovely to hear from you Kelly. I have missed your blog. I hope everything is going well with your recovery too. You have been in my thoughts.

      Delete
  24. I know what it's like to hear that diagnosis (well, cancer anyway). So glad that you have come through the other side of it and that you are fine now and no further treatment needed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comment Judie. Sorry to hear you have had similar bad news. Wishing you all the best.

      Delete
  25. Hi Jean, so glad you are doing well again. Sending you hug from Macau. Your dress is so beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Hana. That means a lot.

      Delete
  26. So sorry to hear of your recent bad health, but very pleased about the quick check and good prognosis. Lovely dress.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Sewingelle. I have been very fortunate.

      Delete
  27. So glad the surgery went well and that no further treatment was necessary! It is always wise to mention anything unusual when visiting with the doctor - what seems to be pointless often is not - as you found out!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Oh no! I'm so sorry you've had such an awful scare, but so very pleased that you've been given the all clear! I did that free screening test this year too, thankfully with nothing detected. Thank you for the reminder that we need to be vigilant and not take our health for granted. Hugs from me xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Carolyn. Good on you for doing the test, something I wish I had done. Great that you got a negative result.

      Delete
  29. Wow, so glad to hear you have the all clear. Not a fun experience. I am old enough to have had the free screening test and all good. And your dress looks lovely. And very comfortable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Vicki. Definitely not a fun experience but I have been very fortunate. Glad you did the test and got the all clear.

      Delete
  30. I'm thankful you are cancer free! Truly two beautiful words! I'm sorry the entire onset to surgery was such a wait, but ever so grateful for the positive outcome and pray you have many more years of health and happiness ahead.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Cancer Free" music to my ears! I have been extremely fortunate and I have a new appreciation for life now. Thank you Nursebennett.

      Delete
  31. I'm so happy to hear that you're okay and cancer free! Your dress is even more special now since it was made during your recovery. I just ventured over from IG to get a better look at the dress and so glad that I did!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Carolyn for taking the time to comment. I have been very fortunate, and I am feeling much better now and enjoying getting back into my sewing.

      Delete
  32. I applaud your efforts in increasing awareness of bowel cancer, and am glad you are now free of it. It was good that your doctors acted promptly (NSW is over four times faster than the ACT—I waited 10 months for a colonoscopy, and that was after waiting for over two months to go on the list! Polyps, fortunately). I'm impressed by how you can go to Spotlight (and now Knitwit) and unearth such lovely fabrics that you translate into such great clothes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your lovely comment AnnieP. If sharing my story can help even one person, then it will have been worth sharing. Glad to hear you had a good outcome, despite your lengthy wait. I do have to use my imagination when fabric shopping. I usually have a few patterns in mind when I shop and I have a rough idea of the type of fabric I am looking for. Sometimes I get lucky, but other times I have no luck at all.

      Delete