September 5, 2013

Dress Dreams Copy Cat Valentino

In the spring of 2011 I traveled to NYC; I spent days exploring the heavenly garment district.
One of the highlights of my trip was spending hours exploring the intricate designer collections on each floor of Bergdorf Goodman. On the 4th floor I fell in love with a lace dress from the Valentino Spring collection.

VALENTINOBlack Tri-Lace Voulant-Sleeve Dress

"Black soft sheer mesh lace bodice with raffia lace skirt. Crew neckline. Three-quarter sleeves; black satin-trimmed ivory alencon lace sculptural cuffs. Raglan shoulders. Banded natural waist. A-line skirt. Back zip. Silk."
I could not get this dress out of my mind, the beautiful lace coupled with the 1960's style it was my dream dress.
The following day I went to Mood Fabrics and got the notion to create a dress like my Valentino dream.
I was able to find (relatively budget friendly) lux laces and a lovely warm pale pink silk for the underlining.
Traveling back home I had every intention of getting to work on my version of the dress but some how as it tends to do life happened and my Mood bag filled with my lovely lace and silk got moved to the stash as time lapsed.
When I read the Copy Cat Challenge blog post the first thing that came to mind was that dreamy Valentino dress.
I began my planning, drawing the dress and finding base patterns with the vintage silhouette.
I had almost given up on the raglan sleeve until I found the perfect retro pattern: Simplicity 7006
This lovely pattern has my basic style lines especially the raglan sleeve! 
I also found the A-line skirt without darts to compliment the lace: Simplicity 3917 
Even though I found the basic lines I wanted I still had to alter my shape while drafting my patterns. Here is what I did: 
  • traced the dress and cut to the waistline to form a bodice front and back 
  • removed the back dart 
  • drape the waistband front and back 
  • trace and crop the sleeves to elbow length; contour to fitted sleeve 
  • draft cuff 
  • drape flounces 
  • shorten skirt 
  • contour a-line of skirt 
After which I had my pattern and I set out to make a muslin

I found that I had a few alterations: 
  • shorten the bodice 
  • sway back adjustment 
  • shorten the sleeve 
  • adjust neckline 
  • broad back and shoulder adjustment 
  •  take in at the sides 
  • take in cuff 
  • true flounce pattern 
 Years later, I am constructing my dream dress about to finally cut my lace.

Serendipity: Yesterday I won a Mood credit for displaying my Mood Badge on the blog!  Thank you Mood! 
Do you have a Mood badge? I highly recommend going here and placing a badge on your blog. 

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Happy sewing!

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