In just under an hour I’ll be headed to the Child’s Play Charity annual dinner, a fancy-dress event that my friends and I go to every year. It’s become a tradition of mine that every year for this dinner, I make my own dress. And it’s also a personal tradition that every year I swear I will not leave this dressmaking till the last minute, and every year I do, in fact, leave the dressmaking till the last minute.
This year, I had a piece of orange and gold silk to work with, a piece juuuust barely big enough for a dress. I’ve never sewn with silk before, and had no idea what I was doing.
First, I made a basic dress shape (the far left picture below). Then I fiddled around with what kind of additions I wanted to make (middle and right photos). I decided to go with the middle photo option.
Then I messed things up by bringing the hips in, which was a terrible idea. I’d cut them wide enough to fit my hips (despite my generally small size, my hips are quite large), then decided I had enough room to bring the dress in a bit in that area, not realizing that this would hugely affect the way the fabric fell. Basic lesson, boys and girls: once you get a general dress shape constructed, don’t screw with it a bunch.
I ended up with an awkward fit in the hips (which I only managed to partially fix in the end), and a poof of fabric on the tummy that made me look like I had a baby bump (that I did manage to get rid of, but it required quite a bit of picking out stitches, which is an especially not-great thing when working with silk…).
Then I tweaked the long hanging gold piece a bit so it gathers in at the bust, and made a few other little tweaks along those lines.
I made some jewelry to go with the dress – just faux gold chain and large gold jump rings, which will look just fine in the low light of the evening. I also made a little matching clutch purse, and found a pair of sparkly gold shoes for $12 – flats, because if you’re not showing any leg I see no reason to suffer through heels.
So that’s my dress! And now I need to go put it on and get ready for this fancy little shindig.
This dinner also has a silent auction and a live auction component, and I finally made some time this year to make something to contribute to those silent auctions. If you’re at the dinner tonight, you can bid on this classy bouquet of Piranha Plant flowers. Like roses, but more interesting. And bitey.
Update: a few photos from the dinner itself.
Someone VandalEyesed my booklet!
I found myself a handsome young man to parade about with:
The silent auction display for my Piranha Plant bouquet, which went for an excellent $300 in the end, all for a wonderful charity!
And posing with some lovely ladies:
Oh, and this was at breakfast the next morning, at a wonderful Cajun restaurant near Seattle Centre, called Toulouse Petit. It’s become one of our regular Seattle stops. Among other things, they have yummy breakfast drinks.