Vogue Dress V8814 ★★

10lineartI absolutely love the way this pattern looks on the cover, but I fear that it is one of those instances where reality will never quite match up. This pattern is very difficult to fit properly. Now, I know I’m not a runway model size, with a perfect ratio from top to bottom, but so very few people are…

Both times I attempted this pattern, I ended up with weird fitting around the hips and a top that was loose not quite right. Making any sort of modification to the fit of the pieces is difficult precisely because of the interesting construction that drew me to it in the first place. The pattern pieces are actually a series of skewed trapezoids that fit together to create a really appealing shape, especially if you choose a direction print and use it well. But that just means that fitting it accurately is well beyond my skill.

Maybe someday I’ll come back to this pattern. You can read about my two experiences with this pattern, and see the results, here: Christmas Velvet &  Chevron Dress.

Chevron Dress

Remember that velvet christmas dress? I said I had plans for that pattern again, and here it is! I chose this fabric because it exaggerates the interesting piece-work construction. The pattern is Vogue 8814. It’s fascinating to me how the same pattern can create dramatically different dresses. Summery and bright and floaty, versus dark and smooth and luxurious.

The fabric is by Domesticate of Spoonflower, printed on kona cotton. I wrote a review for this pattern here: Vogue Dress V8814 ★★

This was also an excuse to play with some hand embroidery. It is a braided chain stitch. I love the tutorials on Sarah’s Hand Embroidery’s website, the pictures are clear and beautiful and helpful.

Christmas Velvet

I love this dress. I love its fabric. I loved making it. I loved wearing it.

I really really hate my photographs of this dress. This is one of those times when I acknowledge that I really need a real camera. And maybe some practice, or some skill. And probably a better spot than my dining room or back porch to take photographs. This dress is amazing. My pictures of it are absolute crap.

Other than that, I’m really proud of this project.

I made this dress for a Christmas/Birthday party we threw at our house for a roommate. I wanted something visually simple but that felt wonderful and moved with me.

I chose a very nice dark green velvet for this dress because I wanted that tactile experience. I also have never sewed with velvet before, and I wanted that experience. Photographing that velvet was a serious challenge with a crappy phone camera. It is a very dark rich green color, and when the low lights hit it at the christmas party, it glowed. It was beautiful. I lined it in silver satin-y lining which felt soft on the inside and showed when I twirled.

This pattern is Vogue 8814. It didn’t turn out quite like I imagined, but I made it work in the end. You can read my review of the pattern here: Vogue Dress V8814 ★★. The pieces are large and simple to put together, but joining those pieces cut on the bias gives it a very elegant look. I included a picture of the cover of the pattern. Because of my inability to photograph the velvet well you can’t see the very interesting structure of the dress. It is comfortable to wear, and twirls fantastically.

I altered the back of it pretty dramatically. The pattern had two choices, with a fully closed back all the way up to the neck and a zipper, or crossed straps. I used the pieces for the full back, but then cut out a diamond shape where the zipper would be and had it simply close at the back of the neck. I attached a filigree bead and a Swarovski crystal to add an awesome sparkle and bring interest to what is normally the most boring part of a dress.