Whilst making this dress i kept getting flashbacks to making my wedding dress. You see i made this dress for my beautiful sisters wedding in August, and i was still making it on the bus on the way to Sydney to catch a plane to the UK! My wedding dress? Well i was still making it at 2am on the night before i headed to the coast to get married last November!! The running theme seems to be that i can't get my shit together hey?!
Anyway, i wore this dress to my sisters wedding and then it got a second outing at the awesome Frocktails event in Sydney last Saturday.
The fabric is old me thinks, it was bought from Vinnies, $3 for three metres, a steal i tell you, A STEAL! And yes they bloody are cranes and they bloody are dancing a merry jig, just look:
Although shiny and beautiful, it has its flaws. Its rayon/silk blend i think. The rayon means it is a nightmare to iron, those damn wrinkles just don't want to budge. I couldn't use steam because when i tried the ink from the crane's started leaching all over the white, ahhhhh! So the dress remains ever so slightly wrinkled.
Also, the fabric has a raised polka dot which is woven into the fabric, it is very very delicate and a few of the polka dots have become polka holes [sad face]. But thanks to Mrs Fray Stoppa, the dress lives on.
It was never actually supposed to become "The" dress, it was supposed to be a muslin or even a wearable muslin. I have this amazing graphic scribble printed silk in my stash, but i fell in love with the crane's, warts and all.
The dress pattern is a vintage Vogue, the 'Very Easy Very Vogue' 9396 view A. Well when i say vintage its 1995...does that count? Lets hope not, because if it's vintage, that really does make me old enough to know a dinosaur or two (thanks kids!). I am not sure how i stumbled across this pattern, but i love the interesting neckline, short-sleeves and the floaty skirt: a fab combo for me! View B, err, not so much ;)
As for the construction. Well the dress is fully-lined with some beautiful fine silk (read: soft and delicate but a total bugger to work with) for about $4 for 7metres at a garage sale (the gatherer bit is in my blog name for a reason folks!). The bodice is also interfaced, i used an invisible zipper and used this method by Sewaholic to attach the lining to the zipper. I used french seams where possible and i hand stitched the hem for a cleaner look.
|oops probably should have dragged out the iron [#ihateironing]|
I had to make a couple of alterations. I needed to let out just the side seams (there are many panels to this sucker) a tadge, and the back bodice needed considerable work.
Basically, the original pattern, being from 1995, called for shoulder-pads, which ain't my cup of tea, or my cup of anything really. But not having the pads combined with my old woman hunch back meant there was a ridiculous amount of excess fabric having a party back there. I widened the neck darts and that did a marvelous job in that area, but widening and lengthening the shoulder darts didn't really help much. So in the end i pinched out the excess and made extra panels in the back bodice.
If this WAS the muslin i would have transferred the alterations to the pattern piece to make it smaller and just had darts but i did not have time to fanny around with all that and that re-cutting business, so extra panels it was. Which actually looks fine as they match up with the skirt panels perfectly! Yay!
The bolero is Simplicity 1943 view F made of the MOST awesomely beautiful gold silk brocade, which i bought about 2 metres of from a garage sale for about $3! I KNOW! Crazy! I actually used lots of it to make cumber-bands for my girls bridesmaids dresses (which i now use as neck scarves!), and had just enough to eek out this bolero.
It really was the easiest to whip together. It is just two pattern pieces, cut out of both self and lining fabrics! The only slight iffy bit was hand sewing the hole up after bagging it out. The rest was a dream. I suspect i will make some of the other jackets in the pattern over time. But i think i will wear this forever, i really love it :)
This was supposed to also be a Frocktails post, but it's already waaaaaaay tooo long so i will do a little Frocktails photo round up this week too :) Bye x