When the kids and I went to visit my family in Washington, I brought along this embroidered linen that I wanted to make a dress from. My much more talented little sister, Marissa, had the perfect wrap dress pattern (and a wrap top she made from it that I tried on to see where I should make adjustments for me). Thanks Missy!
My seasoned pro seamstress mother let me use her machine. WOW, I had no idea what a HUGE difference it made to sew on a better machine! When I came back to my "beginner" machine, I found myself much more stressed and ready to use explicits at times :) (not really but you get the idea).
It was WONDERFUL having my mom right there to ask questions and demonstrate tricks for me. Oh and she has a serger, so that was a nice bonus while making this dress. It took some self control on my part to not just ask her to do things sometimes, but now I can say I did it all myself (with occasional guidance).