Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"Birds of A Feather Flock Together" Dress

I saw this fabric online and I instantly fell in love with is by the designer Carolina Herrera and I absolutely had to have it. The fabric is 100% Silk Twill, the colors and design are just awesome and perfect for the fall.

Carolina Herrera 100% Silk Twill
When I received it I was extremely pleased, it is even better in person. I wasn't sure until i got it what pattern I would use but I knew for sure I wanted to make a dress out of it. Since the fabric itself is so busy I needed something that wasn't too stylized or complicated, I really wanted the fabric to make a statement and not the design of the dress. I had the perfect pattern already!

Simplicity # 2914
While I was in Omaha, NE this past May I found a vintage Simplicity pattern in one of the many Vintage/Antique stores I visited. It is really basic but of course it is a Bust 32, all the patterns I like are a Bust 32 when I am a 34, so I had to grade it up 2". This ended up being a lot easier than my last project, "The Herringbone Jacket", and I only had to alter the bodice since I was able to gain 2" in the skirt by reducing the back pleat to 1" instead of 2".

Since this dress is for the fall I decided I wanted the sleeves from View #2 but I like the "V" back of View #1. I plan to use an invisible zipper on the side since, for me, they are easier to insert than the lapped type. The dress will be lined for modesty and to give it a bit more substance. I haven't yet decided what color I want to use for the lining but I am pretty sure I want to go with the George Kaufman Radiance. I really love that silk/cotton blend, it posses the best qualities of silk and cotton in my opinion. If I lined it in silk the dress would be really flowy and drape really beautifully but it would be extremely fragile and still really translucent, a slip would probably still be required. If I went with a cotton type it would be modest and sturdy but it would loose that drapey, flowy aspect which I really want. With the Radiance I will be able to maintain the liquidity I desire and also have a studier, more modest dress. The only thing I need to decide is what color to go with. The fabric has so many colors to work with and since this is for the fall I want to use one of the darker colors. I think I will end up going with a Rust color. The belt will most likely be made out of whatever I use for the lining....there was a pattern for a Bow Belt included.

I am pretty far a long on the outer shell of the dress at this point. I have cut it out, marked the fabric, assembled most of the bodice and I have complete the darts on the skirt front and half of the skirt back. For the neck interfacing I have used crinoline for rigidity since the fabric pulls and slides in all directions. So far I am really happy with it. The dress is taking me three times longer because I am using the silk than if I used something takes me forever to do anything as the fabric is extremely uncooperative but it'll be worth it.

Bodice Back
Bodice Front
Skirt Front
I am really very happy with this project and glad I chose such an easy pattern since the fabric causes enough of it's own problems just trying to get it shaped correctly!

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