For my make this month I wanted something festive and chose this beautiful Prada (eek!) crepe. I chose the fabric first and set out to find a pattern that would work and make the most of the gorgeous drape. Retro Butterick 5707 fit the bill, with its cowl neckline.
The fabric has a shiny satin side and a matt crepey side. I had intended to use both sides in the dress with the shiny side for the cowl, but loved the matt teal side so much that I only used the shiny side for the belt!
As I was too scared to cut into such lovely fabric without one, I made a toile of the bodice. I lengthened the bodice by 3” (which I think may have been too much) and graded out from a 14 bodice to a 16 for waist and skirt. I did my usual ½” FBA. The skirt is super long in the pattern – I’m 5’9” and it came to mid calf. I had intended to use the long skirt as per the pattern but it didn’t look right, so I ended up cutting 3” off to make it knee length.
I bound all the seams with rayon seam binding as I wanted to treat such special fabric well! After discussion with the lovely Tania, I ordered some Hug Snug seam binding from Ebay in the US. It finishes the seams beautifully but adds no bulk at all. It's great stuff - somewhere in the UK must stock it so if anyone finds a UK retailer please let me know! However my application of it leaves a bit to be desired (hence why there are no close up pics in this post!)
After a total fail on inserting the zip by machine, I did a hand-picked zip. I also sewed the sleeve hems and skirt hem by hand to avoid having stitching showing on the right side.
I made a self fabric belt using the shiny side of the fabric and a silver buckle from Minerva. I love the belt (although it needs a press stud to keep it closed due to the slippiness of the satin – I didn’t think that one through well! But it looks good!)
I do love the dress. It’s very comfortable and doesn’t cling to tights due to the satin inside, so no slip needed. I would say I can’t wait for Christmas to come so I can wear it, but I have far too much to do before then! Still at least I know what I’m wearing!
If you like my Blue Christmas dress, you can make your own with the Minerva kit, which contains the Butterick 5707 pattern, 2 metres of the teal crepe and the silver belt buckle I used.
And for extra points if you got this far, how about some awkward pics of the "pretend to put the baubles on the Christmas tree" variety?