Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Breaking my own rule, the Little Black Dress

Curse you Vogue Patterns! Just when I have put a moratorium on making dresses I was tempted by this  one.  It is Vogue Easy Options 8280, which is their version of the designer Roland Mouret's Galaxy dress. Very popular among celebs and others who can afford $ 2000 for a little something to wear. Certainly that is not me, having neither $ 2K to drop on a dress nor a list of red carpet appearances. Such a pity. I will have to settle for wearing it to some holiday parties.

Black dress final version
And double drat. I broke my own rule of not wearing black. A non-color so visually uninteresting, so fade into the background, so blend in with all the other females wearing black dresses at parties. But wait...I am having a bit of an epiphany here.  Black, well deployed can really work. I suppose the same can be said for beige also. Last week I had to laugh because Tasia from Sewaholic mentioned me in her post about her new Cordova Jacket Pattern which she sewed up in beige.  I feel the same way she does about beige - neutrals are just not my thing and she is a fan of the colorful and flowery as well.

However this dress is so, so something - very fun to wear and not difficult to make. I did enter in the Pattern Review Little Black Dress contest - I swear, the last contest for me so I would really like to win! Wouldn't that be ironic... with the wardrobe piece I used to scoff at but now love. So if you are a member surf on over and vote, my PR name is "sunnysewer".

The fabric I used is a cotton sateen that has been in the stack for ages, ordered from Fashion Fabrics club and when it arrived I was surprised to see it had a faint iridescence on the fabric, so not really suitable for things I would use cotton sateen for. But just right for a dressy item. I did lighten these photos a bit since it is so difficult to photograph black and it is looking a bit wrinkly here. Something about the sleeves give me a toreador vibe.
                   Vogue 8280 front of dressVogue 8280 back view

I made a couple of changes with the pattern. The skirt has front hip darts which always bug me and in this slightly stiff fabric never want to lay flat so I actually used the skirt portion of my blue wool vintage McCall's dress which fits well and has cute pleats on the hip instead of darts. This dress needs to be very fitted so I took in the skirt quite a lot. The sleeves are my favorite feature and I think they may reappear on some future dress. In these images you can see the slight shimmer on this fabric.

Vogue 8280 skirt front pleat detail

Vogue 8280 sleeve view

As I have mentioned in the past, I have a drawerful of vintage goodies which have been passed down from my nana and my Aunt Jo (nana's sister and my first sewing teacher).  This dress seems perfect for some of the sparklies that only see occasional outings...actually I can't remember the last time I did wear any of this stuff, but I swear I have done so.  
These are all rhinestone pieces from the 50's or before.  On the left is a bracelet, and matching earring. I can't find the 2nd earring, sob.  It has to be somewhere in one of my dressers.  On the right are a set of earrings and dress clips.  The dress clips are such a cool item, they have a frame so you can clip them both in and then wear them together as one pin. On the right I am showing the dress clips and matching earrings plus the bracelet.  Lots of sparkle, these old pieces are incredibly well made and comfortable to wear.  

Costume jewelry setsBlack dress with vintage jewelry

Here is the Vogue Pattern, one of their Easy Options patterns that has more than 40 reviews and looks great on so many.  One of my favorite recent versions was done my pal Amy of SewWell blog when she entered the Tessuti contest.  I LOVE her version. Check it out.  Fabric choice MAKES a dress! 
V8280 pattern envelope

And now back to my regularly scheduled sewing, finishing the little girl's coat from my previous post. Then onward to some Christmas gifts. It is pouring rain here and I was thinking about planting some tulip bulbs but not today!

Happy rainy day sewing, Beth

P.S. For a very funny take on the original designer version, here is a link to a short UK newspaper article.
P.P.S. my hair is driving me crazy - soooo close to calling for a "please cut my hair today" appointment instead of waiting patiently for it to grow.  Based on comments on one of my previous posts - everyone knows the feeling!

21 comments:

  1. Those accessories! I almost squealed out loud at work. Fabulous dress, and the bling just takes it over the top. Fantastic!

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  2. I loved making this dress - the sleeve folds make a lovely curve. I like your classic black version.
    All the best in the contest.

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  3. You look amazingly gorgeous! I love the sleeve details, the hip pleats and the slight shimmer to the fabric. Oh my, am I going to end up buying this pattern now?!!! I think a well-thought out use of black can still have a big dramatic impact, though I appreciate your thoughts about a room full of women in black. But, girlfriend, you would knock them all out of the park! You look really, really fabulous.

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  4. What a gorgeous dress! You really look like a movie star! And with those complements, the jewelry set, more so! Those sleeves are fantastic, what a great job! You are right, remind me of a torero, too!Well, I do like black too so there is nothing I don´t like. Make sure to wear your stilettos!

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  5. The sparklies are perfect for this gorgeous dress. Great work!

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  6. Gorgeous dress that looks great on you.

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  7. I'm glad you broke your rule, because you ended up with a gorgeous, very flattering dress! I'll zip on over to PR and give you vote for sure :)

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  8. Ah, the perfect LBD!! I adore this pattern; I've had it in my stash for years, and I've always intended to make it in black too, but now I cannot because you are OWNING this!! Bravo!

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  9. I love how you accessorized it - sassy! ;)

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  10. I love your version it looks amazing on you. Def be voting for you on pr!!

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  11. beautiful dress!and black looks good on you.

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  12. Oh, Beth, this is so very beautiful! I'm so fair that I seldom wear black but this one has such open, feminine lines that it is irresistible.

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  13. Beautiful dress, Beth! Love the vintage jewelry also, what a great idea for the dress clips!

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  14. Oh yes, your rendition of this figure flattering dress is superb. The vintage jewelry is to die for.

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  15. I intended to make this exact dress next: square neck, sleeves, simple skirt. In black as well. I can't seem to find the time though, and I think I'm going to use the black for my Craftsy class pants instead. You look so cute though that you're making me reconsider...

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  16. Gorgeous dress! You look absolutely stunning!!!

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  17. Fabulous dress! I know you are used to wearing a lot of colour but you can't go wrong with an LBD for effortless party dressing.

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  18. This is just such a kickass pattern and I keep meaning to make up it... seeing your gorgeous version just makes me want to get stuck into it right now! I absolutely love the bling mixed with it, especially in the corners of the neckline!! Very, very swish. Looking great!!

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  19. What a gorgeous little black dress you look stunning in it!
    Wonderfully made

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  20. What a gorgeous little black dress you look stunning in it!
    Wonderfully made

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  21. What a great dress. I have the pattern too and hope to make it next year. Good luck with the contest!

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