Monday, August 2, 2010

To the Other End of the Spectrum: Red Carpet Dress

The other thing on my immediate sewing list is a party frock for my upcoming 30th Birthday Party. I have about 1 month.

I bought this pattern for this purpose:

I think it is suitably 'Party' - do you?

Now, the problem is fabric. I need 4m. What sort of fabric do you think would work best with this pattern? There are no fabric recommendations made on the pattern.

Taffeta? Silk? Cotton?

Now, how about colour? I have two choices - monochromatic, or (obviously) patterned in some way. I think I look best in bright, solid colours.

Something to consider is that if I make it in a monochromatic fabric, I can enter it in The Tessuti Awards. I can enter it in the 'Frock Up In Colour' category -- the prize is a trip to New York. Quite a prize.

Obviously, the fabric must be bought from their store. So, I looked on their online fabric store website, and came up with some options - both contest appropriate and some patterned ones that couldn't be entered:

  1. Bright Red Rayon. $28/m. Would be slippery to sew.
  1. Grey Double Silk Georgette. $28/m I'm guessing it would be slippery to sew too.
  1. Japanese cotton. $25/m Easy to sew with. Medium weight - maybe too heavy for all the gathers?
  1. Satin Silk. $42/m (this is getting way out of my price range given I need 4m). Would probably be a bit slippery to sew.
  1. Silk twill. $28/m. Slippery-ish. Maybe too light-weight?

These are just a few ideas. And of course, I can shop elsewhere for fabric for this dress (sorry anyone from Tessuti who may read this!). 

So - what do you think? What type of fabric? Which colour? Patterned or monochromatic? I'd love to hear what you think!


  1. I like the grey silk georgette the most. I think that would be gorgeous! I can't wait to see how your version is going to look.

  2. I would say check out the latest blog post from Tilly and the Buttons from our visit to the Horrockses exhibition where we saw loads of dresses just like this, all of them in ... cotton! Good luck with it, it looks gorgeous.

  3. I love the red! It would look fantastic on you. What a fantastic prize! I would use the red just so I had a chance of winning that.

  4. I would consider using 2 fabrics - one firm one such as taffeta or cotton for the main dress, and a ggt/chiffon/tulle for the ruching.
    Red would be great for a birthday girl!

  5. Are you going to make the jacket too? Maybe something stiff like a dupion and a softer fabric such as a georgette for the gathered bust area like Sherry suggested.
    You wear blue well, the dress would look lovely in a blue and the jacket in matching fabric with a contrasting detail?

  6. Rachel - please make it out of the floral japanese cotton all the way - that is beautiful and you would have a timeless, gorgeous dress from it!

  7. OH I agree with Sherry and Nikkishell, Something firm for the main dress and something pretty and soft for the bust. You could even have the main dress in a solid and the bust piece in a pretty pattern! I love red :-)

  8. Hello Love your blog , I would make this out of a cotton sateen or a taffeta for the skirt and bodice and then a matching chiffon for the ruching . Its a lovely pattern.

  9. I love the ideas of the firm fabric for the main dress and soft around the bust area, but ah, which to choose. I have some Popstar red, and it is gorgeous (just SO soft and drapey!!!) and would look great in this pattern, especially with a petticoat to add volume to the skirt, but it's actually more a fuschia IRL. Be great to enter the competition if you could swing it too. :)

  10. I like the polka dots or the silk twill, if it were me I'd pick the silk twill as I love the autumny colours...