When I first found this fabric, I knew I wanted to go all out with the dress I would design for it. The quirky, somewhat organic shapes and patterns of this amazing corgi and balloon print made it perfect for hiding extra cuts, panels and seams. This meant I could give the dress a super full skirt without worrying about the pattern repeat matching up perfectly. When I decided the skirt would have a centre seam, I knew the perfect bodice to pair it with: an open back, centre and princess seam bodice from a 1956 vintage dress pattern I found years ago when I first started sewing clothing for others.
It’s been a few years since I’ve made a fully lined dress. I made a few when I first started working as a dressmaker but I found people weren’t into the higher prices that resulted from all the extra time and fabric. Now that I’m more established, I’m finding the opposite true. For a while it seemed like every review I received was lamenting the fact that my dresses weren’t fully lined. So this spring, I decided to try something new/ get back to my roots and design a line of fully lined dresses and skirts.
When I first sat down to do my sourcing, I knew my goal of finding a way to increase the quality and value of my work, without increasing my prices out of the purview of my current customer base, would be a difficult one. I decided to switch from a stiff and sturdy eco cotton to a delicate, less expensive but still very nice 100% cotton voile. It has always been important to me than my linings are soft and made from natural fibres, as they sit close to the skin, so naturally, I was very excited to find this luxurious 100% cotton voile. This light and gauzy material is much better suited to skirt linings than the fabric I was using to line bodices before, so it was an easy choice once I finally found the right supplier.
Then, like the cherry on top of a cake, I added a pretty vintage button from my Grandmother’s generous collection to the band at the back neckline. I love using my grandma’s buttons because although every dress is made with the same size and colour of button, every one is unique and every dress is special.
All photos by me.