Thursday, May 19, 2011

Sewing for Occasions

I'm betting that it did not escape your attention that I've been buying up dress patterns lately. I've been wanting to sew dresses and just haven't made it happen for whatever reason. However, I now have 2 excellent excuses to sew up some dresses: weddings! I have 2 sets of friends who will be tieing the knot in the next many months - one in June and the other in September.

I have lots of time to decide exactly what I want to do for September (this dress is a strong contender). What I really need is your thoughts on the dress I plan to make for the wedding of a college friend on June 11. Here's the dress I am planning to sew:

The dress from V1042 Vogue Wardrobe

Now here is where I need your help: I'm really not sure what fabric to use. I've been roaming the Garment District over the last few days during lunch in search of fabric inspiration. All I've managed to buy is 5 yards of white cotton/poly batiste (H&M on 35th St) which at $2/yd is perfect for lining/underlining summer garments, and this fantastic lace from Chic Fabrics on 39th St (all laces were on sale for $4.99, so how could I resist?). It will make a great skirt or dress this winter.

Black zebra print lace with scalloped selvedges.(Shown on light fabric.)

Really, this is indecision at work. The pattern suggests "Silk Tweed, Crepe and Lightweight Gabardine". These are all light/drapey fabrics, which is not what I would immediately think of for a dress like this. In fact, before I looked at the suggestion, I was thinking something with a bit more body, like a cotton sateen. I think my concern is for the bodice. However, the bodice pieces are interfaced with "Nylon Fusible Knit" (um, anyone know where to get this mystery interfacing?) and the dress is fully lined. Am I fretting over nothing?  Will this dress work in a light drapey fabric?

I am going to do a muslin, so I have a little time to decide. Let me know your thoughts. What fabric would you use for this dress? 


Karin said...

I don't know what to say about the fabric choice, I struggle with that myself. I think nylon fusible knit, is just knit interfacing. It's a pretty pattern, I hope you can find just the right fabric for it.

Kimbersew said... about seersucker? the stripeys would be fun with that piecing. and summery. the style might save it from being too casual. I hear there's some at H&M on 35th. has tricot fusible knit interfacing (but only 22" wide. I can't wait to see that dress!

CandaceClay said...

I can understand your dilema! I am in the course of making fabric decisions on a few summer dresses too. I really think you could get away with a mid-weight cotton like a sateen you mentioned. The thing you loose is the "drapey" lightness in the skirt and you get a fuller, stiffer look which takes it from day dress to more formal. If you want to walk the middle road you could go with a favorite of mine cotton/rayon blend or a light twill.

Marie-Christine said...

Knit interfacing, definitely. Which might be a bit hot for the summer. The thing is this dress is kind of schizoid in character, a bustier top needs body, but the skirt needs real drape. Thus the interfacing of the bodice, which could be handled by inter/lining.
A light seersucker would work too, as kimbersew suggests, and be very pleasantly summery.

Grace said...

I have purchased nylon fusible knit interfacing at Pacific on 39th street near 7th ave. I bought it in black, but it's a good bet that they have it in white also.

Clio said...

Thanks, everyone! Keep the suggestions coming! You all hit on the things I'm fretting over - structured top vs drapey skirt, formal vs casual fabric...

Kimbersew - what an inspired suggestion!! I cant stop thinking about it. Hmm, I may just have to make two of this dress, one for the wedding in a dressy fabric and one in seersucker for daytime events.

Grace - Thanks much for the intel!!

Anonymous said...

I think cotton sateen would be too stiff and you'd end up disappointed with the drape of the skirt. How about a soft linen? If you underline the bodice, that might give a drapey material more weight.