Pleated Front Dress

My first issue of Domino magazine came in the mail last week. I really enjoy Domino but I'm afraid their organization hints did not help me in the least. Baskets are really not going to solve any problems for me. My problems are more along the lines of, "put away your junk, lazy girl". The dress on the cover however (and in yellow in the accompanying article) inspired me to make one of my own. The dress is designed by Katy Rodriguez. I modified Vogue pattern V8414 to make my version in gray. Mostly, I took in the shoulders and added inches to the center front for the pleat. The first version I did had shoulders that extended to the end of my shoulders but it looked too girlish/smock/nightgown. So I cut it down a little more until the proportion was right. The turtleneck is from H&M. I really like layering turtlenecks under dresses. It extends their life through multiple seasons. Normally, I'd wear dark tights too but it was 80 degrees today and I just couldn't do it, even if it did complete the outfit.

The photo at the top is doing double duty showing a swatch for some socks I am planning to knit. I received a book about sock knitting for Christmas. I requested the book because although I've knit entire sweaters, I've never knit socks before. They are a little daunting but I'm completely confident that I can tackle the task. I even bought a set of size 3 dpn for the project.

I'm planning to take the sock project and the new frock with me on my trip to London. I leave next Monday and I'm so excited. I've been doing lots of packing in my head but not enough physical packing yet. This is not an unusual pattern for me. I want to have everything I could possibly need perfectly packed, organized and ready for the moment when I will surely need band-aids, an emery board or a tea bag. Despite hours of planning and rolls of lists, the packing is often left until midnight the night before a trip. Maybe this time will be different. How do you pack for a three week long international trip? Do you have any advice, words of wisdom?