Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Beat 'em to it!

I'm sure there are many seamstresses out there like me who are one or two seasons behind the times fashion wise.  I never seem to make things when the pattern just comes out, it's always much later :( . 

However, my 19- and 21-year old daughters have been keeping me VERY busy this year.  They can't seem to see beyond many of the pattern styles and instead opt for looking at Internet pics and saying, "Mom!  Make me this, will you?"  Who am I to shy away from a challenge!  I've made some nice knockoffs this past spring which I have yet to review, but I present you today with a design that I sketched up and made into a dress specifically for my oldest daughter.  Here's the kicker:  the day after I finished, I saw a similar dress pop up on the Bebe website.  Ha!  I like to think I beat 'em to it :) .  For once I was not only on time, my creation was early.  At least it felt like it was.

Here is the dress:

Shown are a few front versions, followed by the back.  I sketched out this design on paper, then went about deciding how to create it.  For the upper bodice, I used Textile Studio's Santa Monica Tee pattern.  I LOVE that pattern.  Can't begin to tell you how many times I've used it for close-fitting tees, then modified the pattern into looser fit fleece tops, made some short-sleeve tees, used part of it for a dress a few years ago, and now used the upper part of the front and back of the pattern for the top of the dress.  I added princess seams on the front and back to create a molded-to-the-body look.  The black fabric used was a stretchy rayon knit, source...can't remember for sure.  Could be

The midriff band was self-drafted to fit using stretch lace in the front and a solid knit band in the back.  Originally I planned on installing a zip, but the knit that I used (think it was a stretchy rayon one), had enough stretch along with beautiful drape.  So I skipped the zip and molded the CB seam to fit.

The skirt was basically two rectangles joined at the side seams, gathered at the top and attached to the midriff band.  Easy peasy. 

The end result?  A style I thought my oldest daughter would like because she was the intended recipient of this dress.  She was really happy with the dress, although I have yet to obtain a pic of her in it.  I thought I had made it short enough for her young adult self, but nooooo!  Those pretty young things like their dresses shorter than short.  I ended up taking another 3" off the hemline if you can believe it.   I was thrilled she was happy with the dress.  That age group is tough to please, and few patterns have the styles she and her friends love.  I'm constantly drafting, morphing, combining patterns...whatever it takes to get the styles both my daughters like.  Let me tell you, it has been an incredibly busy spring making them RTW knockoffs.

I've been seeing a lot of color pops with shoes lately too.  So I paired my red heels with the black dress.  My handbag is handmade from leather which was purchased in NYC at Leather, Suede Skins.  It's a beautiful red, alligator patterned leather, with my handmade beaded handle, and handmade fabric flowers.  The pattern for the bag came from Emma Brennan's book, "Making Vintage Bags."  It's a terrific book with lots of interesting bag styles, and I highly recommend it.

I leave you with a pick of the back.  Really, it would have been my preference to keep this dress.  It's a great LBD for a special occasion that is figure flattering with enough stretch for a glass of wine and a good meal :) .  Even one of my plus-sized friends remarked she loved the style and thought it would be flattering for plus-sized women as well.

Overall?  A successful project that went to a good home.  I hope my daughter enjoys the dress and finds it to be a useful garment in her wardrobe. 

Till next time, Happy Sewing!  :)

1 comment:

Uta said...

You're a great mom! The dress is amazing, well done. You're making me look forward to when my DD gets to that age. She's already quite into clothes (at 7 yo), not so much into fashion, yet!