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Jun 22, 2010

My Twenties dress: new fabric, new plan!

So thanks to popular demand, I've chosen McCalls 4907, the Twenties dress with the front and back yokes, as my next project for Cathy.  Isn't democracy great?

Now, as I mentioned over the weekend, I was thinking of using a black cotton velvet fabric which has since been identified as a burnout.   (Not a very propitious name if you ask me.)

I went fabric shopping yesterday and took a closer look at it and, I don't know, it just doesn't say "youth" to me.  It says funeral.  Rudolph Valentino's funeral.

Honestly, lovely as it is, it isn't summery or lightweight enough.

So I dug around the store and came up with this poly chiffon -- a totally new approach.

I'll be underlining front and back with this:

The two fabrics work well together and drape beautifully.  (I'll use light-colored serger thread, promise.)

The dress pattern itself suggests a similar look:

I just love this palette, especially for summer, and I think it's going to flatter Cathy tremendously.  It's not bad on me either... (it's actually paler than it appears here, as in pic below).

I'm not sure what this pattern is called; perhaps one of you knows.  I want to say it's Indian, but maybe not.  Is it Middle Eastern, European?  Any art history majors out there?

I felt a little guilty making this executive decision without consulting you guys, but what could I do?  I looked at a lot of fabric and some lovely, lovely things, some of which might have been harder to sew.  Let me deal with the challenge of underlining before I tackle velvet and silk.

Finally, I got this poly chiffon for $2/yd -- DING DING DING!   You already know how my mind works.

I hope to get this underway today though I'm supposed to meet my brother and future SIL to pick wedding invitations.  This is what happens when you're an arbiter of style, I guess.

So...the fabric?   What do you think?


  1. Oh My! Cathy will ADORE it! Perfect choice.

    Love your smiley face too, Peter. ;-)

  2. It's really pretty. It actually looks like it should have been a twenties print. It is a perfect choice for this dress. I understand how you feel about the burnout, but I think that would have worked, too. I've seen that sort of fabric in garments from that period. For Cathy, though, I think the chiffon is perfect.

  3. Ok - I'm not an expert in textiles, however I was an art history major at university and this looks like an amalgamation of Heriz (Iranian) and Turkish. I think that it isn't quite geometric enough to be totally Islamic or Persian. Might be some Amritsar styling to the pattern as well.

    In any event, I like the fabric and I can't wait to see the dress. :)

  4. Cathy has got the perfect figure, the perfect face, the perfect hair and the perfect attitude for this twenties dress. And the fabric does look perfect, too.

    Except for: doesn't dear Cathy by now deserve somehting nicer than poly? It is going to be summer - poor thing will melt away ... ;-) So when modelling this (sweaty) beauty make sure to buy her some delicious ice cream!!!

  5. ohhh love it! watching with anticipation!

  6. Love the color and pattern! Hope it's not too hot! Maybe the loose style will create a breeze?

  7. Pretty fabric - it will be perfect for that dress.

  8. Chiffon, poly and otherwise, can be a wily creature. I've had success with starching it (before cutting) to give it more body. It makes it easier to cut and sew on grain. Good luck! It's a lovely print.

  9. very nice! I like it, and the price is great, too!

  10. If you don't like "burnout", it is also called "voided". More space-agey. I like the new choice of fabric, although the other one still speaks of 20s Femme Fatale with a long cigarette holder and a little black bob.

  11. i agree with andrea, i think cathy deserves an ice cream treat.

    it looks like you found the exact fabric from the rendering!

  12. I suggest googling "paisley" to get more info on the print. I'd do it but I'm packing!

    I really like the choice of print and weight and hand of your fabric. And the price/yard is great too.

    I also agree that Cathy has the perfect figure for this style of dress. She should be ecstatic about it, and may make off with it after modeling! Or not.

    I like this pattern, and I would want to make it myself. Have fun.

  13. Lisette, why don't they just call it "lobodomy"?

    Ice cream for everyone if I can pull this off!

  14. Oh, you might want to lose the shoulder bow, and sub a flower made from remnants of the dress material. There are many tutorials online about how to do this.

  15. Love it! (goes well with your stubble ;)

  16. Excellent choice! The color is beautiful. I think this will make up for that bad 80's outfit you made Cathy wear.

  17. I like the blue print better, I agree the black was a little too 'funeral' or perhaps evening. Too intense! The blue's more flattering :)

  18. Your executive decision was likely smarter than the popular vote anyway. I like it.

  19. Cathy is so lucky to have you in her life. I wish I had someone like you. xoxox hug each other and treasure your friendship. marriage on one of your part's could end it forever. i know of what i speak


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