Tuesday, April 22, 2008

2-Piece Floral Dress


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I finally finished this dress, and I'm glad to be done with it. Not that I didn't enjoy working on it, but I've been able to spend almost zero time sewing in the last couple weeks, and I was so close to done it was just killing me not to finish. So, here it is.

The fabric is a silk/cotton blend with an interesting weave that makes effective use of the fact that silk and cotton will take dyes differently. It makes the print look almost like a woven design, and gives it a watercolor effect. Yes, it's a really, really, really large scale print, but it's so large it almost reads as an abstract, and I like that. The fabric is from Nancy Erickson, and I borrowed her idea of making a 2-piece dress. I did not use the suggested princess-seam top however, preferring a darted, cut-on-sleeve top that I've made before. The original pattern is Vogue 2719 which is a Vintage Vogue dress that's OOP. I used the bodice as a blouse previously and it's a real favorite. I redrew the neckline for this to make it a little dressier than a shirt collar.

When I ordered this fabric, I assumed I was going to be using a princess-seam sheath style top pattern, and planned accordingly. As I mentioned before, I really had a hard time getting this top out of the fabric I had. I didn't have really any choice in print placement because there was one, and only one way this fit on the layout. After stitching the top, I really didn't like the look of the CF seam with the print. I came up with my triangular appliqué idea, and like it, then decided that adding a bow would be even better. How can you go wrong with a bow?


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I underlined the entire thing in silk organza, which gave this a lot of body. This fabric has body of its own, and the result is almost a spongy feel, and I think it holds the style very nicely, especially the skirt. I was a little hesitant about lining this as well as underlining, because of the thickness of the fabric and underlining even before lining, as well as the fact that it's a Spring/Summer outfit, and I didn't want to add warmth. And, I'm just not a "line everything" kind of girl. I like to go on a case-by-case basis, and I rarely line tops. Because this top pattern was altered with my saran wrap block, it has a really nice fit in the neck and shoulders, so I knew I could get away with just piping the edges and hand overcasting the piping to the wrong side. There's no peek-a-boo problems with the inside showing here and there, and it makes a really nice clean finish. Here's the top inside-out. You can get a better look by clicking on the photo link and viewing the Original size. This is true of all of the photos.


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The skirt is drafted from my favorite straight skirt, and is the same as the green skirt I did as a trial. It looks quite different, but it's all in the different properties of the fabrics, not the pattern.


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And here's a side-front view.


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I did contemplate a belt with this. I took photos with and without, and although I like the belt, it just makes me look awfully short-waisted, and I think this is a more graceful look. It's amazing how much easier it is to make a style decision while looking at photos rather than when looking in the mirror. Everyone says this, and it's really true.

25 comments:

Mardel said...

Beautiful dress Liana; it looks really lovely on you.

Vicki said...

Lovely outfit Liana! The fabric is pretty - a spring garden. And I like the bow too - nice touch.

Marji said...

i love what you've done with that fabric! And I feel quite smug that I must be channeling Liana - since it's that pattern that I ended up using to cut my silk AnnaSui fabric from, Friday and Saturday - bfore the fall.

Even tho you said it was the only poss placement, I think your motifs work quite well within the context of these garments. Just lovely Liana.

Alexandra said...

What a gorgeous outfit! You look great in it!
I like how it showcases the fabric, too, without many seams interrupting the print.

Elaray said...

So pretty. I love the large scale print. Perfect for spring.

Shannon said...

Beautiful work!

cidell said...

graceful is exactly how I would describe this Liana. I also love love love the piping. So pretty!

LauraLo said...

This is beautiful, so graceful and feminine, such a nice fabric too! You look great.

Anonymous said...

This is FABULOUS Liana. The print is perfect for you, it couldn't be better. Love the scale, love that you kept the style lines simple and balanced. PERFECT!

Vicki W said...

It's beautiful and very flattering!

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

Stunning! I love how you captured the new trend of using a large floral print in a workable outfit that fits your lifestyle. Love the extra touches and the workmanship really shows through in the finished garment!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful - I love the colors! It is like a watercolor.

Susan

Claire said...

Liana, I absolutely LOVE this outfit, but then I love everything you make. I was drooling over the fabric and when I read you got it from Nancy...I thought darn it, I'll bet it's gone.
You look stunning as usual.

Rhoto said...

Beautiful!! So "Jackie", too. LOVE the bow!! Cotton/silk is an interesting, new fabric, eh.
Warm greetings,
Your Montreal admirer,
Rhonda

Anonymous said...

Absolutely stunning!
VtMartha

BeeBee said...

Beautiful dress! Your details, as usual, are perfect. The style is very flattering on you and the fabric, of course, is TDF! Just lovely. I hope you feel as good in it as you look and that you enjoy wearing it until it falls apart many years from now.

Cherie said...

This outfit is lovely, lovely. Can only say that so many times in one post, so consider the "lovelies" all over the place! This suits your elegant style, and that tailored bow is just perfect! Great details, so couture!

Zoubida said...

Very elegant outfit and charming fabric you used for it. I love the idea of silk organza underlining too.

Linda said...

Very pretty two piece dress, gorgeous fabric. You can wear this print well.

Pamela Erny said...

Absolutely Lovely Liana!

I've said it for years...and I'll say it again.... you are one of THE most fashionable women I have ever had the pleasure to know!

Pam from ~Off The Cuff Style~

Mary Beth said...

Really pretty, Liana, the bow and piping are excellent, esp with this beautiful fabric. Ready for Spring!

CharityinAlaska said...

Lovely, lovely print. Love the texture on the dress. The colors look great on you and the fit is, of course, pure perfection.

a little sewing on the side said...

I decided to treat myself and read through your post very carefully. I must admit, I didn't even notice this fabric when Nancy was showing it. What a show-stopper now! The piping is just perfect. I liked how you worked through the process and let the design work itself out.
Enjoy wearing your beautiful 2-piece dress!

Summerset said...

Very elegant and spring-like! I'm glad you got to finish it.

Cantinho da Hakathi said...

I love your clothe's... U have a magic hands!!!!!