Liberty of London Summer Challenge : Project 5 Stylish Dress Book (available at the workroom) Dress ‘M’ variation : Liberty of London ‘Wiltshire’
We went to a wedding in Montreal a couple weekends ago. It was a lovely affair out in the country on the grounds of an old mill. It was the perfect occasion to sew up another dress using my stash of Liberty of London fabrics. I chose to use the deep plummy ‘Wiltshire” print.
I agonized quite a bit over what pattern to use. I went through my vintage sewing patterns, scoured my collection of Anthropologie catalogs and revisited my inspiration folder on my computer. In the end I decided to make a version of Dress “M ” from Stylish Dress Book. The Japanese dress books always come to the rescue in the end.
To make the pattern a bit more dressy, I made the back neckline a ‘v’ shape and made a facing for the bodice to clean finish the neckline and armholes. To create more gathering in the skirt, I added a few extra inches to the width. This was really not necessary, but just a result of me being over zealous about gathering.
Of course, I was working on the dress just a couple days before leaving for Montreal. When I did my first fitting I found that I had cut the dress too short. Oh dear. I wasn’t sure what to do. I thought about just adding more fabric to the end, but when I talked to Kristiann (teacher of our Knock it off, Underwear and Pattern Drafting classes) about it, she had the perfect suggestion. Kris’ idea was to randomly create miniature pleats along the bottom to create a slight bubble. To add some length to the hem, Kris recommended sewing a folded piece of fabric to the bottom edge and then ironing it down so that the final hem was self-finished. I really love this idea and to create a very slight contrast I used the ‘wrong’ side of the Liberty fabric for the hem trim. The printing on these Liberty of London Tana Lawns is so well done, on many of them it’s hard to figure out which is the ‘wrong’ side of the fabric.
My finishing touch was a sash, that I wore tied in the front.
After a bit of nail biting and obsessing, it really turned out just right. The perfect ‘summer chic’ dress for a wedding in the country.