The “Don’t Be a Hero” Dress
Fabric: Thrifted pillowcase (part of sheet set), $4
Notions: Thrifted buttons, $0.05
Time to complete: 2 hours
First worn: June 2011
Wear again: Perhaps — Might cut it into a shirt.
Total Cost: $4
When it comes to these challenges, I've got to learn that it doesn't quite pay to be too stubborn.
For this pillowcase challenge, I really really wanted to make a dress from the pillowcase form (rather than just cutting the fabric and using a pattern) since I had fairly good results with my dress for the xoJane piece. What I didn't realize at the time is how crucial the starting length and shape of the pillowcase has on the final results. The Ikea case I used for my first dress was long enough to make a short, but modest enough dress. That wasn't the case for the next two pillowcases I went through for this challenge.
The pillowcase I used this week came from a bedding that I had purchased at a thrift store for about $4. Unlike the other two pillow cases that I attempted to use, this one wasn't threadbare or too sheer. That made a whole world of difference.
For this dress, I didn't use a pattern. Instead, I used the basic form of the pillowcase and cut holes where the neck and arms should be. Like the xoJane pillowcase, I stitched up the sides to be a bit more form fitting. That alone didn't work and I needed to add darts up the front, back and side bust.
From the extra fabric I took from the sides, I made the belt and ties for the shoulder straps. Finally, I added some buttons for a decorative touch.
Under the dress is yet another pillowcase (one of my too sheer rejects). I'm wearing it as a half slip to provide for much needed length to the main dress.
So do I like the dress?
I think it's a lot cuter in person than in the photographs. There's something that just not conducive to posing. Perhaps the length, perhaps the volume at the waist. While I wouldn't call this dress a reject, it wasn't a home-run.
Lesson: Don't be a hero!