Sunday, September 9, 2012

Mad for Plaid

Well, Fall weather will soon be here, so now is as good a time as any to play with some plaid fabric (courtesy of a Sew Weekly Pattern Swap).

I just love when an entire dress can be made from bits and bobs in the stash.  And this dress was one of those projects!  Well, except for the zipper . . . but all in all, that is pretty darn good.

I found the bemberg rayon lining in a drawer.  And miraculously, I had a dark brown spool of thread on hand.

To break up the linear plaid I decided to cut the midriff pieces on the bias.  To keep everything from stretching out, I pulled a length of cotton from the stash and cut duplicate pieces on the grain and treated them as an underlining.

This also was a bit of a relief for all of that plaid matching.  Actually, this particular plaid was quite easy to match.  Knowing this, I still would have chosen to mess with the midriff section.  I believes it makes things look a bit more interesting!

I also found the bodice shaping very appealing.  Silly me, I assumed that those lines were darts (which could easily be substituted if you hate pleats) and one of these days I will actually start reading the descriptions on the back of the pattern envelopes, but this time it turned out to be a happy surprise.  They add a little something different to a very basic silhouette.

I like to use a french seam on my bemberg linings.  It  gives me an opportunity to practice the technique, sometimes pressing the first seam open, sometimes to one side, without having to worry about a perfect and narrow finish on a delicate fabric with quite a bit of drape.  At this point, the finish feels like second nature.

As I was putting my outfit together, I remembered a brown velvet ribbon belt that I rescued from an old skirt.  Instead of wearing it at the waist seam, I opted for a mid-ribcage look (because of the velvet nap, it stayed in place all day long!).

Dress:  Made by me, Vogue 8555
Shoes:  Colin Stuart for Victoria’s Secret
Necklace:  Banana Republic


  1. I love this on you, it's not your usual vintage but I think it's absolutely fabulous - love the ribbon!

  2. I love how you 'Laura Mae'd' this pattern into a hint of retro- it's lovely!

    1. Overheard Gripe #1:

      "Now they're turning a phrase for, and about, her."
      "A phrase? It's a verb!"
      "What if it gets into the vernacular?"
      "Barring containment, Laura Mae-hem will ensue!"
      "Or will we find ourselves in a full-fledged Laura-Mae-le'e (Laura-melee)?"
      "Come what Laura Mae, we best stock our sewing cellars with canned goods and treadle machines."
      "That's pointless, she's already dominating chat rooms, blogs, and magazines. Her sewing militias are rumored to be on every continent, in every country. The future will be rife with crisp pinafores, draped shrugs, and well-worn ruffle attachments."
      "Why, she's all but Laura Mae'd this world her own."
      [sardonically] "Ya noticed?"
      [in a cautious whisper] "THAT Laura Mae!"

  3. Stunning dress, Laura Mae. You look lovely in it. The plaid is great choice!

  4. How terrifically pretty. The blend of elegance and sweetness here is right up my alley. You look immensely lovely in your new plaid frock - fantastic job on it!

    ♥ Jessica

  5. What an absolutely stunning dress! You look marvellous in it and I really like the addition of the velvet ribbon. This has to be one of my favourite makes of yours :)

  6. Wow, beautiful! I'm a sucker for anything plaid :-)

  7. Another beautiful creation! I love the plaid bias midriff!

  8. I love plaids! The dress looks great and putting the midriff section on the bias was a great choice. Love it.

    PS-my pattern from the giveaway arrived saturday-thanks again!

  9. Really pretty! Good call cutting out the midriff on the bias and the ribbon adds another little punch to really finish it off.

  10. The plaid and the bias midriff look fantastic! The dress is a great cut for you. (the hot librarian pics on the stairs are adorable.) ~S

  11. This is such a beautiful dress. The length and the fit look wonderful on you. Modern fit, but with a retro fabric twist.