In all the years that I have been making clothes, sewing and crafting, I have never made myself a party dress. I make an extravagant birthday occasion dress every year for my 5-year-old so I am no stranger to the dramas of working with slippery, fragile and fine fabrics, so I decided it was time for some selfish sewing.
I was inspired by the name of Simple Sew Patterns Veronika Dress and decided she was going to be a red silk beauty. I couldn’t believe luck that the fabulous people at doughtys had exactly the colour I needed, click the link to buy the same gorgeous fabric.
They were very generous and gave me the material to make this dress. The pattern said 2.7 meters was needed but I managed to cut it out of 2m, so will have some over to make The Little One a party dress from the remnants. I aim to practice a zero waste system in my dressmaking, so no scraps will go wasted from this fabric. The larger ones will be used for a dress for my daughter and the small ones go to her old nursery school for crafting and anything left over is made into dolls clothes.
So on to the layout and cutting…it was so lovely to cut into, very satisfying, my favourite part of creating is cutting the fabric, I have no idea why I like it so sew much.
I take ages doing this part as I am trying to aim for zero waste.
First I cut the skirt, look at the fullness of this skirt, so exciting.
Wow this skirt is going to be great for dancing in!
I then cut the front bodice and tacked the bust point (you can just about see the black cotton. I then pinned the darts. I did this so I could try it on again to see if any further adjustments were needed. I did a very brief pattern fit, eg I pinned the darts on the pattern and tried on the bodice front and back to see if the fit was ok before I selected the size I needed.
I know I should pin the other way, ie pins at 90 degrees, but as I mentioned I wanted to try it on for fine tuning the fit.
Heres what she looked liked from the right side
I decided I wanted to use the silk as the lining rather than use cotton or a poly satin. I recently made a dress for the royal wedding sew along and I also used silk dupioni and a cotton lawn for the lining, however, I didn’t like the finish, so decided to self-line this time.
I attached the front and back facings at the shoulders.
Then I pinned the facing to the bodice
Stitching the join
joining the side seams
Attaching the waist band to the bodice.
Loving the V neck shaping, will need to get some bra stays so the bra won’t show.
The exciting bit attaching the bodice to the skirt.
…and here she is Veronika, the red dress, Gorgeous. Still hemming and pressing to go. More photos of her in the wild to follow. I have also ordered a big red petticoat to complete the look.
And here she is in the wild