But the story doesn't start with the dress design, or the way I agonized over what patterns I might use to recreate it. Oh no, the story starts with the fabric, which began its life as a bedsheet.
As the sheet was a rather crisp fabric, with very little drape, I knew my dress design needed to be rather structured. I also wanted it to have a vintage feel and feminine details. It wasn't long before I happened across the perfect inspirational design on Pinterest - a 1940's pattern for a button up wrap dress..
This design immediately caught my eye, and I knew it was exactly what my floral sheet needed to become. I just needed to figure out what pattern I could adapt to use for this project. Well, that appeared to be easier said than done. I had no similar patterns in my stash and neither the Simplicity, McCall's, Butterick, Burda, nor Vogue pattern books at Joann's yielded anything promising. The sheet was in danger of languishing in my stash for a loooooong time, just waiting for the right pattern to appear, when I discovered I'd actually had the perfect pattern all along - Simplicity 1460.
A few weeks ago I used this pattern to make myself a blouse. It turned out fabulous, and fit wonderfully! So, once the blouse was done, I started thinking about what else I wanted to make from the pattern. Immediately my floral sheet 1940's dress idea came to mind. By just continuing the angle of the V-neck all the way to the waistline, I was able to quickly and easily draft the wrap bodice I wanted. I love the scalloped detail of the neckline of this pattern, so I continued the scallops (in a pattern of larger and smaller scallops) down the bodice and onto the skirt as well.
With just a little bit of careful measuring, and more tracing of scallops I was able to extend the blouse peplum pattern into skirt pattern to match my new wrap bodice pattern. (How many times is it acceptable to say "pattern" in one sentence??) Once that was done, I drafted waistband, to mimic my inspiration picture, and new facings for both the bodice and skirt (all my pattern changes had rendered the original facings completely useless). Then I was ready to sew!
To show off all the scallops I so carefully traced and cut out, I decided to apply blue piping to the front edges of both the bodice and the skirt, and around the waistband too for good measure. This was the one part of dress construction that took the longest - but it was so worth it! Look at how nicely those scallops pop on the finished dress!
|Ok, those white flakes? Yeah, that's snow. The second weekend of April, and we got snow!|
In my button stash I found a large wooden buttons, just the size I needed for the waistband. Then, I dug through my highschool nail polish collection (good thing I haven't thrown it away) and found the perfect shade of green to match my existing buttons. In under 5 minutes I had a green button for the waistband, and my button dilemma was solved!
Once the last button was attached, I put on the dress and was immediately excited - it had turned out exactly as I hoped it would!
|Attempting to relish the fact that it's snowing, in April, while I'm wearing a spring dress.|
The stiff sheet fabric holds the shape of the dress perfectly, and hardly wrinkles at all, making this dress very easy and comfortable to wear!
The scallops, piping, and wrap design are fun, feminine, vintage details that add visual interest, so this simple dress can't be called boring!
Cute, comfortable, vintage inspired, and easy to make (with pockets too, of course!), what more could I want from a dress? Honestly, I don't know. I think this dress is pretty awesome, and I plan on making it again, once I find the perfect fabric, or sheet, to do so!
Thanks for reading, and have a happy spring! I hope yours is warmer than ours has been!