I had a formal dinner to attend this month. They called it a "Black and White Ball" and so I went in search of a black, white or black and white fabric to make a dress. My original plan was to make an amazing ball gown.... but why would I spend so much time and money on a one time wear dress? I am much too practical for that. So, I opted for an elegant black dress that would be appropriate for any formal occasion.
Not having a pattern, I decided to use my favorite, go-to skirt and top patterns; Butterick B5917 and New Look 6808. As always, I traced my patterns onto tissue paper. I couldn't believe that they matched up almost perfectly. That alone encouraged me and made this project go smoothly from the very beginning.
|Combining New Look 6808 and Butterick B5917|
The only real modifications that I needed to make were to lengthen the skirt to the ankle and add a scalloped neckline and side slit. The zipper on the top needed to be moved to the back but that caused no major problems.
Once I had all of the details worked out on my tissue paper and a cotton muslin, I knew how much fabric to get and jumped right into it. I was looking for a nice woven material such as a jacquard, damask, or brocade. I also tried out something that I picked up from a youtube sewing vloger. That was to use a sheer fabric for the lining. For this project, that was a mistake. I would have liked the finished dress much better if the lining fabric would have been something more silky.
|Fabric and Notions|
The gown took me a good deal of time to make because I absolutely love to hand sew. The only work that was done on the machine was the two side seams and the center back seam. All of the darts and seam finishings were done by hand on both the lining fabric and the fashion fabric. I also top stitched around all of the scallops, at the neckline and the sides. As always, I hand stitched the zipper.
Now for the reveal.
|Finished Evening Gown|
I'm very happy with the overall look and fit of the gown. It was very appropriate for the dinner we attended and we had a great time. Now I just hope that I will have more opportunities to wear it.
What have you been up to in your sewing room?