Hot! The ‘Summer in the City’ Dress

This week, the lace travels up to Canada and to Tasia, from Sewaholic.  Both Tasia and I began blogging about sewing around the same time last year — in fact, I first started reading her blog when she sent me an email introducing it to me. In the last year of so, her addiction to sewing has not only resulted in a wonderful sewing blog, but also a line of her own sewing patterns including the Pendrell Blouse and the new Crescent Skirt!  Thanks so much, Tasia, for participating in A Common Thread and sharing your delightfully feminine dress! Bravo!



The Facts

Fabric: Cotton sateen from Fabricana (my local fabric store), $12.98/metre
Pattern: Vogue 1174
Year: 2010
Notions: Lace from Mena, regular zipper, plastic boning, muslin bodice lining, cotton batting for bust padding and thread
Time to complete: Two weeks broken up into little bites, a couple of hours at a time.
Wear again? Definitely!
Total Cost:  $34.11 for the fabric and notions, the pattern was from my collection.

I was thrilled to be invited to participate in this project. What a wonderful concept! I was flattered to be included along with such talented sewists around the world, and couldn't wait to receive the lace in the mail.

Once it arrived, like Sunni, I also found it challenging to design around the trim. I'm so used to choosing the fabric first, or choosing the pattern first, but never the trim first! It's an interesting way to start a project, almost like working backwards. I've often spent time sifting through my button collection, dreaming of projects to feature the best ones, but I've never actually created a whole project around a notion!P1000715
For this lace, I wanted to have it inserted somehow into the garment, not sewn on top, so that it didn't look like an afterthought. That's when I thought of using it like a piping, inserted into seams, for a more deliberate look. I remembered making Vogue 1174 last year, and decided the piped seams along the bodice were a great way to use the lace.P1000733The best part of making a pattern twice – or three or four times? The opportunity to make little improvements with each version. It's a second chance to fine-tune anything that wasn't exactly right with the first garment! P1000708For the second version of this dress, I added straps to make it more wearable for daytime, and padded the bust with handmade cotton batting pads. The things that stop me from wearing the first version often are its flattening tendencies and the fact it was strapless, making it a little too dramatic for everyday wear! A little bit of strategically-placed cotton batting made a world of difference! Just a slight amount of padding created a well-rounded silhouette and added a little modesty.  P1000707

I picked a bold, bright floral print to contrast with the delicate lace, and I quite like how it turned out. It was cold and windy when I took these photos, but luckily the sun was shining. I plan to wear this dress again several times once the weather warms up.

Thanks to Mena for inviting me to participate in the Common Thread project!




Comments are closed.

  1. Wow! This is darling! Bravo!!
    Love the fabric :)

  2. Very cute. I think I would like to try the lace/piping technique,

  3. very nicely done!

  4. Beautiful contrast of the dainty lace and the bold fabric. Very much like the piping way of attaching the lace. Lovely dress.

  5. OMG – LOVE this beautiful dress and the fabric! Well done!

  6. The dress is amazing and you look stunning as usual! I love your version from last year too but this one even more! It’s so wearable and thanks for the inspiration on sewing the lace into the seams like piping! And that fabric is just gorgeous!

  7. Love the dress and the fabric is beautiful.. Using the lace as piping….great idea..
    It looks great on you..

  8. Love the idea of using the lace for piping! And I feel like this is a rare photo of you in non-heels, maybe you were bike riding?! :)

  9. Wow! I love everything about this dress, Tasia!! Job incredibly well done! (Your Keds are awesome!)

  10. Yes! You’re right, I AM bike-riding! :) You’re so observant! I rode my bike to this park to take photos after class one day. I brought heels in my basket, but forgot to put them on. And I think the keds are pretty cute with a dress!

  11. Thank you!! I love my Keds – I got them thanks to YOUR comment on my bike riding post, thanks for the great suggestion! They’re not only comfortable and great for biking, but they look feminine and cute, too!

  12. Thank you! I like this one better, too. The cotton fabric’s more comfortable and the straps make it easy to wear. I’m putting together a post on how to insert lace into seams as well, if you’re interested! :)

  13. Thanks! I had two fabrics in mind, this one and a smaller print, but now that it’s all finished I’m glad I went with the big bold print!

  14. Thank you! Me too!

  15. Thanks Stacie! I’m putting together a blog post on exactly how I did it, coming next week. It’s really easy to do and would work on any seamline!

  16. Thank you! I think the fabric totally makes the dress, it’s so bright and summery and fun!

  17. Very beautiful dress, the lace inserts are a fantastic idea.
    I am a new sewer and so have no clue how one would place padding in a dress, will you be showing this on your blog as well?

  18. Beautiful fabric choice. Love to see an action shot of you on the bike!

  19. Keds, that’s the word! You’ve worn flats in photos before, but “non-heels” was the best I could come up with, I blanked! Anyway, yes, the combo is great and is perfect for biking :)

  20. This is the cutest dress ever. I really one but i don’t think my sewing skills are quite that good. Great job!

  21. Such a pretty dress!

  22. a areally lovely dress, the wat the lace doesn’t just sit on top of the fabric really makes the whole look.

  23. margueritedesigns

    That’s very pretty. The lace trim just makes it.

  24. SO CUTE! Love it!!

  25. So Girly. Love the contrast of the bold colour and the feminine lace. I think its a real party dress with the lace in the bodice- reminds me of the bodice of a can-can dress…yes my mind is in costume mind!
    Well done, Ta Meagan

  26. What a great job you did with this dress. I love the colors of the fabric and it is really cute.

  27. Oh, that is a lovely way to include the lace into the seams! Nicely done! xoxo

  28. Hi Ronniie – yes, I’m planning a tutorial in the next week or so, showing how I made the padding! It’s not too hard to do, it just takes a bit of time to put together.

  29. Good idea! It would give me something to pose with too…

  30. Thanks Charlotte – I do like how the lace looks set into the seams, too!

  31. Love the straps you added. That fabric is gorgeous!! The dress is perfect!