Butterfly Dress(Burch Street Clothing) »
InstructionsThis is actually a combination of three patterns, the Butterfly Dress, Vogue 2237 (Badgley Mischka)-underlayer dress , McCalls 3571-Sleeves, and my own modifications
Type of item: Clothing
Silk Organza, Polyester Lining
What was your inspiration?
I'm a professional Classical Singer and voice teacher when I'm not sewing. Recently I performed in a song recital featuring music with bird themes. This dress expresses my whimsical side for sure and the beautiful teal blue fabric was a gift from my friend, Susan. She said, "maybe you can make a concert dress out of this one day!" Not only does she know my colors but she is a true kindred spirit on many levels.
What are you most proud of?
The customization of the best design elements of all the patterns I used. I'm also happy with the sleeve beaded trim detail. What was the most fun was giving myself the freedom to think outside of the box and try new things with this project, something I don't usually feel brave enough to do.
What advice would you give someone starting this project?
The first thing I did was draw several pictures of the kind of dress I was imagining. The thing I did not want was to make a bird "costume"- too corny!!! This dress ended up being elegant yet whimsical which was just right. The best advice I could offer would be to definitely MAKE A MUSLIN from the pattern(s) before cutting fashion fabric! I cannot stress the importance of this step enough.Personally I tend to get excited to sew my fashion fabric and don't want to do this step, winging it as I go, but I'm glad I did. I just put the muslin on the dress form, tweaked, pinned, pinched as I liked then cutting the diagonal angles I wanted instead of the symmetrical pointed edge the Butterfly Dress called for. Draping the fabric to see how it responds is also a good idea. Knowing the outer layer would be sheer, I made the under layer shoulder straps out of nude ribbon so the effect would be strapless. I've made the Vogue pattern before which is boned and strapless but every time I performed in it, I found myself hoisting the top up every time I went off stage. I couldn't make the dress too tight because I needed to breathe. FYI, singers do need to breathe! LOL! So the nude strap idea for my dress in this case, was so much more practical to wear. In the end, it was one of the most comfortable performance gowns I've ever made/worn.