Animal Print Brocade Holiday Party Dress

I love this dress! I thought it would be too poofy and make me look bigger than I would like to look, but after wearing it, I was OK with the poof.

 

V1434 in animal print brocade

Vogue Pattern 1434 by Isaac Mizrahi in animal print brocade

 

I used Vogue 1434 to make this dress. It’s a Vogue Patterns American Designer pattern designed by Isaac Mizrahi:

V1434 Pattern Cover

V1434 by Isaac Mizrahi Pattern Cover

V1434 Line Drawings

V1434 Pattern Envelope Back and Line Drawings

I cut out this dress in a size 14, making a fitting muslin of the bodice first, which took some minor tweaking at the shoulders and bust princess seams, but the fit was pretty great overall. I cut it from a beautiful Italian animal print cotton blend brocade in metallic cream, rose and peach shades from Oscar de la Renta I ordered from Moodfabrics.com:

Oscar de la Renta Cream/Wint/Rose/Peach Animal Italian Cotton Blended Brocade Fabric

Oscar de la Renta Cream/Wint/Rose/Peach Animal Italian Cotton Blended Brocade Fabric

Pattern Cutting the Brocade

Pattern Cutting the Brocade

I had a nice red silk crepe de chine fabric in my stash that was just barely enough yardage to fully line the dress:

cranberry red silk crepe de chine for the lining

cranberry red silk crepe de chine for the lining

The dress was fairly easy to construct with a basic princess seam sleeveless bodice and full pleated skirt and deep pockets, lined by the same pattern pieces for the bodice and different patterned pieces for a gathered skirt lining.

The most time consuming part was making the pleats.

I traced the pleat placement using the handy pleating guide included in the pattern pieces:

Pleat Guide Pattern Piece

Pleat Guide Pattern Piece

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I found that this would have been helpful had all my pleat tracing work had actually shown up and stuck to the brocade fabric once it came time to sew them. Instead, I actually held the guide up to my fabric as I pinned each pleat in place, then carefully basted them down:



Pinned and Sewing Pleats

Pinned and Sewing Pleats

This took the most time and attention, but it was worth the work!

finished dress!

finished dress!

I love how the lining turned out, accept the fact that I didn’t take the time to make French seams on the skirt as the inside of the lining could show my mistake or if anyone looks at it throughly inside and out. Oh well, I might just pink the seam edges so they don’t fray.

Mood Fabrics even sent a little label with the fabric that I sewed into my dress below my Love, Stephanie label. Oh, the little things make all the difference!

Labels Pinned and ready to Hand Sew Into Lining of Bodice

Labels Pinned and ready to Hand Sew Into Lining of Bodice

 

Lining of Bodice with Labels

Lining of Bodice with Labels

this dress is fully lined in red silk crepe de chine

this dress is fully lined in red silk crepe de chine

This dress was a huge hit at the two little holiday parties I went to Saturday, and I plan to wear it to another party on Sunday! I even met a woman who wants to talk to me about making some custom dresses and apparel for her! Plus, friends of mine have been dying for me to make them something custom, and we have some really great project ideas in the works! So exciting!

I was going for a dress inspired by these dresses I pinned on Pinterest:

Eliza J dress at Nordstrom

Eliza J dress at Nordstrom

Lanvin Jaquard Dress

Lanvin Jaquard Dress

It is so very cool to be able to make my own clothes, and then wear them and “sell” my work to others!

The Deep Pockets are Wonderful!

The Deep Pockets are Wonderful!

Love My New Dress!

Love My New Dress!

 

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and  and Happy New Year to ALL!!! MWAH!!

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Colorblock Dress

I busted out this dress, hopefully just in time to make the deadline for the Patternreview Colorblock Contest! If not, no biggie, just a prize gift certificate to my favorite online fabric store, Mood.

There were a bunch of wonderful entries, so I might have come in about 5th place, maybe, with this little dress:

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I saw this dress pattern, Burda 6851:

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on the Simplicity.com website, and thought it was perfect for a color blocked project (I believe my first!), and something I could easily interpret for my needs.

Once I started researching the pattern online (Google, Yahoo Images), with only one other pattern review on Patternreview.com, I found that someone pinned on Pinterest this pattern as an, um, EXACT copy of a Donna Karan dress from her Fall 2015 line, so of course I was even more excited to make this dress!

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This dress was a pretty simple sew. The hardest part was adding the zipper, which was instructed as an invisible zipper, but I chose a semi-exposed, plastic zipper with black trimmed zipper teeth, a black zipper pull, and a clear white plastic zipper tape, as my seemingly cool zipper alternative:

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Well, my cool zipper idea kind of backfired because the zipper is a tad too heavy and stiff for the ponte knit weight, and the ends of the zipper are super plastic-y and won’t behave with the top and bottom seams, thus leaving a bumpy, lumpy and scratchy interior of the zip area. Not great, but a good effort.

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Had I had the time, and sewing buddy to help, or an exact clone of myself to come in handy, I would have “pinched out” at the mid back of this dress to avoid that nasty bubble at the back. I also would have adjusted the underarm weirdness at the dolman sleeve “meeting”:

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As well as lost the trying-too-hard “deer in headlights” look on my face. Really Steph?

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Overall, it was a great dress to sew up in a few days. I may sew it again, I may not, but I really should be making my own patterns at this point, and making them unique.

Oh well! I enjoy letting others do the pattern making (thank you Burda!), and doing the fabric and construction stuff for me, thus my love affair with commercial patterns!

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Tootles for now and see you soon!

Happy Holidays!