Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Pretty in Prada

What a busy month it's been.  Here's the second "Lyndsey" dress - a bit long in the making due to fitting in a few of my own makes - oops, sorry Lynds!

This gorgeous fabric was purchased from Brighton stalwart Ditto Fabrics as one of their ex- designer fabrics, Prada no less!  It's a lightweight metallic slightly stretch fabric and the colour I'm thinking is nearest to describe it is pewter.

Not sure of what form the dress would take, we opted for 2 metres at £7.99 per metre (£7.99 per metre for (ex) Prada fabric - bargain!

Lyndsey has a love of drop waist dresses so I cut a straight simple dress pattern (omitting bodice darts) to the hip and then merged it with a skirt pattern cut in a handkerchief style.  To construct the skirt section I measured around the bottom of the top (if you get my drift) and then measured the top of the bottom, i.e. where the skirt fits onto the bodice, and modified the skirt at the join so both were the same measurement.  The rough sketch below shows how this was done. 


Due to the neckline being rather wide I added in three small darts (as shown above). I've now used this method a couple of times to make a neckline smaller as it seems to work a treat and cuts out the question - now what am I going to do? - when you discover your neckline is too wide. 

The complete mare part of the whole operation was fitting the bottom of the zip.  Not usually a difficult exercise but somehow the fabric decided to stretch itself and thus there ended up a bit of bagginess around the bottom of the zipper.  I unpicked twice, which in itself proved to be another problem as the delicate nature of the fabric meant it didn't like being sewn and unpicked and I was fearful of holes appearing. I re-sewed the zipper but in the end had to take in the dart at the back to take up the extra fabric, so I'm not 100% but, in the end the fabric could take no more amends and I had to slipstitch the slight amount of fabric that wasn't sitting right.

I'm wanting to say the fabric is "tissue-like" in nature and not very robust - but then when could Prada fabric ever be described as robust?  Hence, I decided to line it and, after checking out several fabric shops and not not finding a good match, had a rummage in the loft and came up with this tartan lining.

It gave just the right amount of weight once sewed up as a second dress. I used the technique from my Feminine Wardrobe dress to insert the lining and hand sewing the turning openings at the shoulders once the lining was fitted in place.

After an easy time hemming the handkerchief style bottom of the dress it was time for the fun bit - a little embellishment.  In this case a length of satin ribbon attached to the join with a bow finish. 

Give us a twirl.  Lynds loved the dress and decided to wear it as soon as it was handed over for a Tapas dinner date.

Have you sewed anything for anyone recently?

The details:-

Ease of sewing:  Fairly straightforward - 4/10 difficulty level.  Just that pesky fabric which kept threatening to stretch at the zipper.

Cost:  Fabric:  2 metres at £7.99.  Lining from stash and a bit of ribbon decor - 45p  Not bad for a Prada (fabric) dress!

Happy sewing.

Linda x

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