December 16, 2014

Dress Sewing Update

I am about halfway through sewing my new Renaissance inspired dress! You may remember the black and gold dress I made (see it here) which I was mostly happy with, though it turned out really tight so I went back to my old bodice pattern that I know fits to make this second dress. The sleeves of these dresses are the best part and I was totally inspired by the Borgias TV program to try this style. The costumes on that show are just gorgeous!

a costume from the show
This dress will be a violet and burgundy swirl patterned brocade with ivory voile under-sleeves. I have some perfectly matched berry colored velvet ribbon for trimming the sleeves, but I need something else, possibly some thin burgundy braid or soutache. I cant decide if I want to fasten the over-sleeve with ribbons as I did last time or buttons and loops. I will probably just use ties again if I can find the berry velvet ribbon in the ultra thin width when I go back shopping for trims.

I decided to use facings instead of a lining with this dress to hopefully avoid some of the size issues I had with its predecessor. I have been finishing the raw edges of the brocade with a tight zig-zag stitch before sewing them together to combat internal fraying. I just love this fabric and want the darn dress to fit! I can't imagine what my managers would think if I came in to work in this dress, I certainly know the customers would be a bit confused! I plan on wearing it, gotta spice up retail work somehow!

This was my original sketch, but now I have changed the sleeves just a little in order to use the same patterns I used on the black and gold gown again as those worked perfectly! I can't wait to finish this dress and show you all! I have a fun idea of where to go take pictures too, so stay tuned later this week for the reveal!

The camera really hates this fabric, the color is more like the first photo


  1. My word, that fabric is positively ravishing! I have always loved dark reds/burgundies and if damask or similar effects are added in, I go weak in the knees. We had burgundy flocked damask curtains at our old place (they were fitted to the large windows there and would be hard to have work again unless they were cut down; I still have them and may do just that for a future house one day) and they truly "made" our whole living room at the time.

    ♥ Jessica

    1. Thanks Jessica! This same brocade comes in a few different colors, but I couldn't resist this particular shade, it looks more purple or more raspberry depending on the lighting. I am really hoping to find this fabric in black too! I would love some burgundy damask curtains myself, I can't wait for the day I finally have my own place again and get to decorate!


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