Thursday, October 19, 2017

Queen Victoria Dress

This project was so much fun! Have you seen the PBS show Victoria? I've watched it several times now, can't wait for season 2. After a friend of mine and her daughter watched it, they decided they wanted a Queen Victoria dress for Halloween.

Of course, that meant I had to watch it again for research purposes, lol! Here are some of the dresses I ended up using for inspiration.

I decided to go with the wide neck, puffed sleeves, lace trim details, and a belt.

I used McCalls 6420 for the bodice because of the puffed sleeves.
I cut the neck quite a bit lower and wider to get that Victorian neckline. I had more adventures in dyeing, using the same fabric I used for the princess dress, but going for a darker green. This actually ended up having a hand in influencing the design.

I had to dye in batches, and one of the batches turned out slightly different in color. I decided to add the overskirt to tie in the different colors a bit, as having the top and bottom a bit different seemed a little jarring to me.

So here she is!

I love cameo jewelry, so I decided to add a little piece at the neck, in addition to the lace, ruched trim, and bow.

I also made a hoopskirt for this one, and added some lovely pleated lace I found.

Just for fun I stuck this over the giant Ikea hoop skirt I bought a while back, there's so much skirt that it fit just fine, lol, though it was a bit too short.

So there's another fun period inspired dress done, I'm looking through my fabric stash for more to make!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

My Inner Child's Fantasy Princess Dress! - McCalls 5731

Last year around Halloween, I came upon McCalls 5731, a great basic princess dress pattern.


I fell in love especially with the drawing they made for view B, THOSE SLEEVES!!

When I was little, and as many little girls do, wanted to play princess, I always wanted a "real" princess dress. I didn't want plastic sparkles and throw-away costumes, I wanted a beautifully made gown that was me-sized.

So this year, I decided I wanted to make a version. I didn't have anyone in mind to make it for specifically, but it was just one of those things where I had to get this out of my head and create it in real life, and hopefully whoever it is meant for will find it. :-)

I've been trying to use up my fabric stash, and so I had fun playing around with dying some mint green polyester fabric I had quite a bit of. I used Rit's Dye More that is made specially for dyeing synthetics. I mixed sapphire blue and charcoal, and got this lovely rich blue (which looks almost teal in this lighting, but it's not really).

I loved it! I decided to pair it with some buttery cream fabrics for the front center panel, and use an overlay of the swirly sheer organza I had leftover from the bluebonnet dresses for the center bodice.

I lined the sleeves with a very light blue, to pick up the light blue swirlies in the bodice. I trimmed it with a silver lace for just a tiny bit of sparkle. I loved the combination of all the fabrics, and just kept going until I finished her up this weekend.

In process pic..

I'm proud to say that except for the silver trim, all the fabric I used was from my stash, hooray!

And here she is!

I'm SO in love, it's just what I imagined! I can't describe just how satisfying it is to create what you were hoping to create, it's the best feeling. The only change I made to the pattern was to add a bow to tie in the back, so that it could be cinched in just in case it was a little big.

I also made a hoop skirt to go with it...

...because, I mean seriously y'all...if you're going to go full out princess, you HAVE to have some structure underneath for some serious poofage, amiright? Look at the difference some structure makes!!

I have a little confession...when I see a lovely little girl with a sweet princessy dress that is droopy, it makes me a little bit sad! I always felt that way when I was small too, lol, no half-baked princess gear in my house, I'm an all or nothing kind of gal.

So that's it! Since this wasn't made for anyone in particular, it's now listed in my Etsy shop, (as is the hoop skirt!) awaiting its home. This was such a pleasure to make!

And I'm just as excited about my next project, a gown inspired by Queen Victoria! Stay tuned. :-)

Sunday, August 13, 2017

1930s Inspired Summer Outift

I had so many plans for summer outfits, but so far this is all I have managed to get done. Fortunately, the skirt especially has become a summer staple. It seems like every time I wear this I get tons of compliments, one day I went out and literally every person I spoke with mentioned how much they liked it, including my dentist, lol!

It was really quick and simple to sew up as well, using McCalls 6993 version B. While researching this pattern, I found several examples of version A which is adorable and fabulous, but I wanted something a bit quicker and simpler, so I chose version B.

The top is a mish-mash of the very simple and popular McCalls 7542, and the top tier of ruffle sleeves from Vogue 9243. I had to add a little bit more shape and length to the McCalls bodice since the boxiness wasn't super flattering. I just wanted, again, something fairly simple and quick or I would have just gone with the princess seamed Vogue bodice.

I used a lovely floral stretch denim from JoAnn Fabrics for the skirt, and cotton coral eyelet for the top. I underlined the eyelet for the bodice but not for the sleeves. The color of the eyelet was a bit difficult to capture, it kept turning out more orange looking in the pics, but this one is pretty close to the real color.

With the underlining it ended up a little bit heavier than I hoped, so I haven't worn it much because it has been so hot! I'll probably wear it a bit more in the fall and winter, the sleeves are so much fun!

Untucked so you can see the whole thing.

Of course I added a pocket to the skirt, and I encased all my raw edges in Snug Hug on the inside.

I wore this on our road trip to Santa Fe which was great!

I think the skirt will be one I pull out again and again because it's comfy and easy to wear! Once it's a bit cooler I hope to wear the top a bit more.