Dress from the dream

Let me share quite a curious story this time. It would never have occurred to me to make this particular dress. It came from the dream, and it was not even my dream!

One beautiful autumn Saturday morning we met for a brunch with my girlfriends. We hadn’t seen each other for a month or so and had so many good stories to catch up on, time flew and we were talking and talking. Later we had some of the conversations continuing on our messenger chat. Next day, Sunday morning, one of my dear friends suddenly writes to our group chat and is telling the following story. Apparently she had this dream the night before where I was wearing this gorgeous slip dress in deep green color, paired with heavy boots and was participating in some kind of a photo shoot. I was all energetic and over the top happy. When she wrote this on the chat, I was like – “what kind of dress was that, again?”, and she went ahead to send a picture of a dress just to clarify the exact content of her dream. I then doubled checked whether she thought the dress would also go nicely with black leather jacket, and we all agreed that most likely it very well would. I bet, everyone else on the chat was having a good laugh about the entire conversation. And then I did not say anything else.

So there I was seriously thinking. One side of me is always seriously thinking, I also have the other one, that might be funky and fun, and crazy, and spontaneous. However, this last period of time wasn’t the best for this latter side of me. I guess, hence, this dream! So I took all of this seriously, and figured – “you know what, if someone took their precious dream time to dream the dress for me, I absolutely have to make it!”

For slip dresses I know of only one really good pattern, which I immediately purchased. That is Sicily dress by Sewing Masin. And shortly I went to the store to look for this specific shade of green – I had clear description what kind of green that was, and even a photo reference in case confusion arose 🙂 So there it is, my new dress from someone else’s dream!

Sicily dress was all over Instagram in summer. I haven’t quite thought of making it myself too seriously, but had made a mental note to get back to this pattern next summer, if there was some nice rayon or silk fabric appearing in my stash. So this was just a perfect occasion to try this pattern out. Sicily dress is a classic bias cut dress on spaghetti straps. It looks easy, but it is never easy to work with slippery fabric cut on bias. Bias cut requires quite a bit of attention and the process is slower than with other cuts or types of fabric.

Apart from working a bit slower, there were no particular challenges with this project. Masin instructions are very detailed and really great. She explains the process so carefully, up to stitch types and lengths, that’s great to work with. I cut pattern pieces in size A for the top of the dress and graded to size B for the waist and down. Retrospectively, I probably should have gone with size B all along – for my next project I might wanna do that to get the top less tight. It is great that there is only one facing to work with as front facing is part of the front dress piece. So attaching facing, under-stitching and installing spaghetti straps is really the most peculiar part of the entire process. When that is done, little else is left – side seams and hem.

I made side seams using French seam method, using narrow zigzag stitch to make sure it would allow for a bit of stretch for bias cut fabric. Then I allowed the dress to hang for few days to be able to make the hem even. Tried to hem it using rolled hem foot, but once again had to conclude that bias cut slippery fabrics do not go well with rolled hem foot. So instead I ended up stitching 5 mm from the edge, ironed once, stitched single hem close to the edge, cut the remainder of fabric making sure that the hem would be as narrow as possible, ironed twice and stitched double folded hem. It takes much longer to make a hem using this staged method instead of resorting to rolled hem foot, however this time, rolled hem foot was not even an option.

The only real amendment that I made was lengthening the dress by some 5 cm. However, honestly, I should have lengthened it even more – as much as fabric width would have allowed. Now the dress falls below knees, and I find this dress length being probably the least flattering on me. Will keep this in mind if I decide to use this pattern once again.

For this dress I needed some 1.70 m of this deep green fabric (in 140 cm width). This time around I chose polyester fabric. For one, it was a little bit of a joke project, so I did not want to invest in silk, on the other hand, I would not have found this particular shade of green in rather thick silk that would not have been sheer. The pattern used was Sicily dress pdf pattern by Sewing Masin, I graded from size A to size B for the lower section of the dress. Other notions were – a bit of lightweight interfacing, a bit of interfacing tape and coordinating thread (which it was terribly difficult to find in matching color). This dress cost me 9 Eur. It was made in October, 2021.

Ok, even though it was kind of a joke, I was all proud about implementing people’s dreams! 🙂 When the dress was finished, I proudly posted the picture on our chat, and my girlfriends were simultaneously surprised and amused. It is a good dress, really. Granted, at this time of year I would get terribly cold in it – from autumn to spring I am cold wearing anything, unless it is wool. So it is not like I’d have many occasions to sport this look shortly, but I love it regardless! I think, it will be a great look to go to cinema or some kind of informal evening event in summer. Paired with formal black blazer and heels it looks nice for a bit more formal dinner too – I checked out that look as well.

One of my friends even asked if I would be willing to make this exact dress for her, which I unfortunately had to refuse, as I was still holding on to my promise to not commit to projects for someone else. Maybe it will change at some point, but for now, I am happy with my new dress that was born in the dream!

Thanks for checking out his post! Let’s catch up next time!

~Giedre~

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