Uneventful Dress

The title of this post is somewhat misleading but really appropriate! A few weeks back I found this great, lightweight black cotton fabric with embroidered with gold thread in a paisley pattern, topped of with some clear sequins. From that description it might sound like a hot mess but it really was beautiful on the roll so I snatched some up in hopes of a simply styled dress for my last Kellogg ball (tear...).

I got it home, searched for a pattern in the files, and came up with one from Simplicity that I think is from their "lost" collection, if they have such a thing. I've scoured the internet for a picture but cannot find one. It's a basic sundress pattern with different hem line lengths. Because I planned this dress to be for the ball I went with floor length after I added a good 6 or 7 inches, since the longest version in this pattern fell to about 3 inches above the ankle. Here's what that gave me:

Careful readers will note something wonky with the left side of the skirt: that is the back side panel that has already been cut to knee length! As soon as I got the front stitched up I realized that this dress and fabric were not going to be cute as a casual full-length dress (which, upon typing that, I realize is an oxymoron of sorts). So I sliced off the bottom, finished the frock, and got this:

The back does zip all the way to the top, just not on my dress form, apparently! I like the tied neck straps - they keep this casual despite the sparkly fabric.

Aside from cutting the skirt length, I made some other semi-drastic changes to the pattern. First, I fully lined the dress on account of the fabric being almost gauzy in weight. I also just prefer to have most dresses completely lined. The bodice is done in a cotton sateen to give it some structure and because I've learned that fabrics that will be close to the body are better when they're of the natural variety, particularly in summer dresses when the heat is on! The skirt is lined with a poly lining from Hancocks; no big whoop.

Other modifications include my usual invisible zipper rather than standard and adding horsehair to the hem to keep the crispness of the line and to give some body to otherwise flimsy stuff. I was really pleased with that decision, and you can see it if you look closely at the bottom left of the overall photo.

Conclusion: a fun summer dress for nice nights out but not the one for Cinderella's last ball. Attempt 2 is currently sitting on the cutting table...

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