The “You Had Me at Dog in Boa” Dress
Fabric: Cotton novelty print from Novato Estate Sale: The Return! - ~$.25
Pattern: Simplicity 1926
Year: c. 1945
Notions: Belt button fasteners, side zipper
Time to complete: 5 hours
First worn: November 2011
Wear again? Yes!
Total Cost: ~$.25
When I first considered what I wanted to sew for this week's challenge, I only thought of the patterns and outfits that I was less than happy with the results. I was pretty much certain I was going to revisit the skirt and top combo from our 1970s week. Bad fabric choices are pretty easy to undo the second time around: this time I would choose a heavier skirt fabric and a less matronly print for the top.
But then when it came to find the patterns, I could not find the top. That was the bad news. The good news is that it forced me to somewhat clean my sewing room. I am happy to say that I can now (pretty much) walk in the room without climbing over any boxes, pieces of fabric or pincushions. It's still a mess, though.
So instead of revisiting the bad and hope to make it good, I decided to revisit the good and hope to make it great. Simplicity 1926 was used all the way back in January for the second challenge — the "Unrequited Love in Film" theme. I absolutely loved (and still love) that dress and would have to say that it is one of the top five pieces I've made this year that remains in heavy wearing rotation. In the past two weeks alone, I've worn it twice and that's with winter coming up fast and furious.
Even though the dress is highly wearable, there are a couple of changes that I wanted to make for the latest version. For one, it's just a little too long. Though I like the look of the three-tiered skirt, I decided that I could do without the middle tier. That would bring the dress to my knee — a far more modern take on the dress.
I also chose to make the neckline ruffle a bit narrower. It always feels a bit too costumey when I'm trying to get everyday wear use out of it. Both complaints (dress length and costumey bib) would make it seem that I don't like the dress. It just goes to show how much I do like the dress! Even though these two elements bother me a bit, I still want to wear the thing all of the time. Maybe it has to do with its awesome yellow color.
But back to this week's creation.
Let's just take a moment to appreciate how awesome this "dogs wearing boas" fabric truly is. Yes, dogs in boas. I could start and end this post with just the following image and be completely satisfied.
This fabulous fabric came from the Novato Estate sale, part II. Based on the narrow selvage and print method, I believe that this was one of the oldest pieces of the lot. Even though I thought it was cute at the time, I didn't know if I'd ever use it (that's how it always goes!).