Thursday, January 17, 2013

Making a Formal Dress

My husband's company has their annual Christmas/Holiday party each year in mid-January.  Because of the industry they are in, Christmas is a very busy time of year for them, so it's just easier for everyone to gather after the holidays.  The party is quite an affair - it's a semi-formal event and the company owner is always in a tux, along with a few other very formal souls!  

Last summer I was given several yards of this black and white dot satin fabric so I decided I would test my skills and make my dress for the party.  This was the first time I'd ever tried to make a formal gown (not to mention the fact that I rarely sew for myself).  The result?  I love it!

Yeah, one of my friends already pointed out how awesome the play kitchen looks!
I started out with McCall's M6283, originally intending to alter the length and make the pinched skirt floor length.  Once I got the news I'd be having gallbladder surgery, that plan was set aside!  Yes, I am blaming that pesky gallbladder for pretty much everything lately!

In the end, I cut the pieces for the pinched skirt and extended them to floor length.  Instead of doing a lining layer and then pinching the top layer, I only made one layer and just let the panels swirl out around the bottom and they are nice and full!  I loved the little swish while I walked :)

I also self-drafted a little jacket since I'm not really comfortable being out in a strappy gown!  The jacket is fully lined and has short little sleeves.  The flower pin is just some tulle wrapped a bunch of times in a flower-ish shape and then pinned with a lovely antique looking brooch I salvaged from an old sweater.

I also added a solid black band between the bodice and skirt.  I felt it added some visual interest, although it was a bit tedious to put in!  I hand stitched it with a blind stitch on both the top and bottom edge to keep it from flipping up and so no one would see the stitches.

It definitely came out slightly different from my original vision but I was so happy with the result!  As a bonus, it was super comfortable to wear!  

I suppose in (MANY) years, the girls will have grand schemes for formal dresses they want mama to pull off, so this was a good first try!  I know I saved some serious cash doing it myself and it's always nice to be able to fit something to yourself exactly the way you want.  Has anyone else ever made a formal gown?  I'd love to see some!  Link up in the comments so we can all ooh and ahh!

1 comment:

  1. This looks good and you look beautiful too.

    How exciting it is to be able to make something completely beautiful for oneself. I started learning how to sew late last year and I must say it has been fun all along. Looking forward to making a dress from scratch for myself soon.

    Way to go.


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