June 5, 2013

Another crazy dress

Yesterday, I finally finished the dress I've been working on. Don't worry, there are pictures which show it better.
You may already recognise the silhouette though. I announced this dress in my "sewing plans" post.

I even posted this sketch back then.

It wasn't much later that I started drafting the pattern. In itself, that wasn't difficult but I wanted to incorporate the adjustment for the larger cupsize (other than that, I could just use the bodice pattern from a previous kimono sleeved dress as a starting point). And then, work was crazy these past weeks and we had plans in the weekend which didn't leave much time for sewing.

Anyway, this is what vintagesewing (with a big 'thank you' to lsaspacey for pointing out the webarchive page) calls a "cowl skirt". It also appears in Winifred Aldrich's Metric Pattern Cutting for Womenswear, which I sort of looked at while drafting. I own that book in Dutch and the name there translates as "tapering skirt with draped hipline". 

Whatever the name, this not your average skirt. Of course, playing with the proportions could yield less over-the-top looks but it's never going to everybody's cup of tea. I was torn between love and fear during much of the construction myself ;)

Other than that crazy skirt, the dress has fitted kimono sleeves with underarm gussets and a convertible collar with a bit of a twist. Normally, such a collar is drafted on a high and fitted neckline, I widened mine by 2 cm, made it quite a bit deeper and made a separate facing which allowed me to make the lower notches stick out past the straight lines of the front overlap.

At the back, there's a little detail I've been admiring in 1940's and 1950's patterns. It's pointed at center back. A small detail, but if the collar curves nicely at the back of the dress, I think it looks rather good.

I made the dress in a mystery fabric which I think is viscose. It's quite drapey (which was really needed for that skirt), of medium weight and has a really soft plush back (which does mean I'll really need a slip if I ever want to wear it with tights). I had remembered the colour as a dark teal but actually it's more like bottle green. 
And the belt, I made a couple of months ago from a piece of thick leather (which used to be a material sample at a furniture store) a purchased buckle which matched the colour perfectly and some heavy duty gormets.

All in all, it's not an 'everyday' kind of dress but I like it. 

16 comments:

  1. I love the collar detail, although I'm not sure I'd go for such a full hip, being rather hippy I tend to want to reduce that area of my bod - it looks awesome on you though.

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  3. feels more like art than clothing! Love the collar and skirt, even if the skirt doesnt help you achieve conventional proportion (long legs), front view is very cool in picture 3!

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  4. Fabulous! I think the effect is neither hip-y nor short-legged, as it is so very clearly the dress and not you who are that shape. It is really a wonderful dress. When you say 'not and 'everyday' dress', do you mean that you will wear it only for certain occasions, or that you will wear it for ordinary days, but only occasionally? I love the way you have worn it here with the very sexy shoes, and the back of the collar is really beautiful. I can't stop myself from saying again that it really is fabulous.

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  5. such an amazing dress.. love the futuristic feel of the skirt, combined with vintage looking bodice!

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  6. You're welcome! It looks great and I love the color too. A grayish-green right?

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  7. Wow, wow, wow! I love this dress. What a fabulous look. Beautiful!

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  8. what a GREAT dress! it is fabulous and i am loving the new picture style. nice and bright. the dress is amazing on you and i am loving the collar detail that you incorporated. just beautiful!

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  9. Not crazy, but amazing! I love the hip drapes and the point at the back of the collar. You've done a superb job of both designing and constructing this beautiful dress.

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  10. In the words of V.V. Brown, it's 'crazy amazing'. Which I think is supposed to be good! (At least I meant it that way.)

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  11. ahhh beautiful. love all the details. and the way the back of that collar sits is just amazinnnnggg

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  12. This is absolutely gorgeous. It's just so feminine and elegant without being costumey or over the top. Love it. It's nice to see all these techniques being used 'in the flesh' so as to say.. I've been uploading a sh*t tonne of vintage books and manuals onto my blog for people to do precisely this but I rarely come across anyone using the actual techniques. Go you! XD

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  13. love the dress!
    You look very beautiful!

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  14. Wow, how did I miss this one? Eep. This is so crazy cool. I love all the little details, the collar and lapels, as well as the big crazy detail that is the skirt. I think I totally want a dress with a skirt like that... Win!

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