I haven’t been sewing much recently – the house has kept me busy with other projects, but recently a friend, Beth, at school commissioned me to make a dress for a wedding she was going to.
She had seen and liked my boat neck dress and asked if I could make a similar dress in lemon yellow. I drew up some sketches and she loved the 50s vibe.
On our recent trip to Birmingham I found the PERFECT fabric. Lemon yellow. Holds its shape. Very subtle animal print pattern in the weave. I snapped it up and showed her the next day. Luckily she agreed that it was the perfect find and I had the go ahead to start the dress.
After taking all of her measurements I altered my pattern and made a muslin for the bodice. As the skirt is so full I wasn’t so worried about the fit of that. I took it to school and marked the alterations needed and then began work with the fashion fabric. Because the shape is quite simple and the outer fabric is very subtle, I went for a pop of interest in the lining. It’s purely for fun on the inside, but I like the frivolity of it. I lowered the neckline from the version I’d made and raised the back slightly, but other than that it’s the same shape.
Beth wanted more of a band under the bust so I folded some lace and sandwiched it in place before topstitching the lower edge. I wasn’t sure about other embellishments so I tried a few out – a collar was too kitsch, but bows worked well so I made a few. 2 stiff ones made with the outer and lining fabric, which I interfaced and then attached a pin to and a floppy lace bow that matched the belt.
Of course I had to do a few alterations – I forget how different body shapes can be, at first I made it too big and then took it in too much! But finally it fitted beautifully and she looked lovely in it.
I made sure to include some business cards in the package so she can hand them all out to (hopefully) admiring friends!!
PS I’ve asked her to send me some photos when she wears it to the wedding so I’ll post an update as and when I receive those!