Monday, February 3, 2014

Little White Dress

Oooohhh...I love this dress.  I've had my eye on it for a long time.  The lines of the dress are just so interesting.  Turns out the construction is really interesting too, but I'll get to that in a minute. It was fun to sew but, even better, I feel like a million bucks when I have it on.  The pattern is Vogue 1341, if you're interested. I've loved the pattern since the moment I first saw it.
I didn't so much love the deep plunge into the armpit, as that renders the dress unwearable to me.  Solution: interchangeable panels!  What could be more fun than that?  Channeling my inner Kate Middleton, that's what.
The Duchess of Cambridge in a little white dress and red fascinator
I made the dress and fascinator for two sewing activities.  The first is the Little White Dress contest on  When I saw the contest I knew this pattern had to be the one I made.  I'm not sorry.  It's fabulous.  The other reason I made it was for the sew along on the first week of Project Sewn, the Fashion Icon Challenge.  It didn't take me long to realize that all I needed to do to make this project work for both activities was to make a fascinator and use Kate Middleton as inspiration.  If anyone is a modern style icon, it's Kate Middleton.  She is stunning and makes great fashion choices.  I used Vogue 8868.  There was no question that it would be purple.  It goes with my new hair.  :)
Me in a little white dress and fascinator
 I liked the clean, unfussy look of this fascinator
Turns out the fascinator is traditionally worn on the right side of the head.  We in the States drive on the opposite side of the road from the Brits so why not do the same with the fascinator?  Besides, it balances out the insert on my dress.  For the Little White Dress contest the challenge is to make a dress that is versatile enough to use in both the daytime and the evening, just like the iconic little black dress.  Challenge accepted.  Before I started constructing the dress I planned to put it into the rotation of dresses I wear to church.  Halfway through making it I was asked to be in with the 18 month to 3 year old kids at church, thus turning my pure white dress into a fish cracker disaster waiting to happen.  Oh, well.  Some day.
I styled my dress for the daytime in two ways.  The first was for a more formal daytime event, an art show. We went to where my cousin had some art displayed at a little cafe and took pictures there.  My dad was my gracious photographer.  I accessorized with a metallic silver purse, purple pumps, my fascinator, a sparkly bracelet and earrings, and a purple insert covered with lace left over from my wedding gown.  Oh, and a ginormous ring that is a replica of Kate's engagement ring.  I wore the fascinator flatter to my head, as per my own preference.
It only seemed appropriate to style the dress for work, as fancy daytime events are few and far between.  I'm a stay at home mom of three.  Fancy daytime events happen...never.  I guess I'll have to plan a killer tea party with Blue Eyes and the Pink Blur so we can have a great reason to dress up.  I chose to accessorize with a simple dress panel made of the same fabric, shiny silvery earrings, bracelet and watch, a simple black bag, and pointy scarlet kitten heels.  I pulled my hair back to hide the purple streaks which might be deemed unprofessional in an office setting.
For my evening look I used the same plain white panel to accent the dress.  I have very sparkly earrings (too bad you can't see them), black heels, a blinged-up black and white purse, and a bracelet of sparkly black beads interspersed with clear stones set in shiny silver square "beads".  I had fun carrying my mocktail glass and feeling like I was at some swanky party.  My pop of color was my hair, which I pulled back up to expose maximum purple.  I wish that showed up better on the pictures, too.  Oh well.  I didn't add a necklace to any of the looks because it would just compete with everything going on at the neckline.  This dress pretty much stands on its own.

One quick note about the construction: the way this dress is made is weirder than any other construction process I've ever done.  And that's saying something.  There are no side seams.  The front of the dress is formed by making tucks on the lower front  and joining it to the upper front with one ridiculously long dart that goes from behind the shoulder to past the center front.  I forgot to have my dad take pictures of the side and back.  The back seam curves from the underarm down to the center back and then stays on a straight line.  If that doesn't make sense then just click the link and scroll down to the line art.  It's crazy but it's a blast to sew.  The fascinator was an easy sew.  I like it so much that I may just make another of the views and see if I can find an excuse to wear it more often.

Linking up:
Building a Better Wardrobe Giveaway


  1. Interesting dress, and what fun you had with it.and it looks very nice in all of the different ways you styled it

  2. What an interesting dress! After looking at how beautifully it looks on you, I feel like I need to go and hunt for this pattern now. Well done!

  3. Great dress! You did a wonderful job. :)

  4. Wow !! Fabulous dress!! You look great in it.

  5. Well done! I love that you've styled it in two different ways!

  6. Love this! Definitely adding it to my pattern wishlist lol