Today I’m finally revealing the dress I made for the #SEWTALLANDCREATIVE2017 Design Challenge hosted by the Tall Guides and Marge Clothing. Doing any sort of challenge can be a little stressful but this one was really fun AND I’m really, really happy with my dress. If you’ve been following along, the challenge started back at the end of March which feels like ages ago now. Over the last few weeks, I’ve shared my inspiration, my design process, the construction process and today is the final garment. Seriously, I’m so excited to show you this.
When I first opened the box of fabric that I was challenged to use (see it in this post), I felt a little apprehensive because to be totally honest, I probably would not have bought any of the fabrics from the store. AND I had to use two of the fabrics in my dress. Thank goodness that I had almost two months to work on this dress because it was a challenge.
I spent a lot of time thinking about patterns and my very limited fabric options and settled on the tropical print lace and a vintage pattern, Simplicity 5850. I can’t remember the last time I used a vintage pattern or lace. It was so far from what I usually sew and I’m so glad that I went for it because I LOVE this dress. Warning! There are a LOT of photos in this post.
Simplicity 5850 was pretty straightforward to sew and I only had to make a few adjustments to get a really good fit. I only had to lengthen the bodice a few inches (detailed in this post) and the skirt was actually long enough as is.
I incorporated the second fabric by applying flat piping to the neckline, armholes and waistline. It's pretty subtle but adds a nice additional dimension to the dress. The dark purple fabric is really really lightweight and it was really challenging to use. So, full confession, my flat piping is not perfectly even around all the edges. To conceal the uneven application, I may add some more of the purple bias strips, and sew them on by hand with the raw edge showing.
Part of the reason I chose the maxi dress pattern and this fabric is that I thought it would be the most dramatic option and this is a competition after all. I actually don’t make many maxi dresses. Maybe because being tall, I’m just not used to something super long? Well, this one is very, very long. I used as much of the fabric as I could and made a very narrow hem. In these photos I’m wearing about a 1.5 inch heel but I think I could wear something higher. I actually almost tripped over the hem because it’s so long.
I’m so excited to see what everyone else has made for the challenge. This was a good challenge and I’m so curious to see how they’ve used the fabric. Make sure to visit their blogs to see what they’ve made:
Most of all, I really hope that this challenge will inspire more people to take up sewing, especially those of us who have an extra hard time finding clothes in shops. Being able to make one’s own clothes is so empowering. Plus, it's really fun. Instead of spending hours trying on dresses that don't fit you can spend a few hours sewing and have something that fits your body.