beckyjane art | welcome to oddball land of my whimsical imagination

My Handmade Whimsical Dress

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Today I'm so excited to share with you this dress I made on an impulse. I must admit I was inspired to make a dress after binge watching reruns of Project Runway on a vacation from work. Although I know reality shows are mostly fake and full of drama, this show does energize me to try something new creatively so I'll take that as a positive. During a quick break from my television trance I ran to JoAnne's Fabric with a budget of twenty dollars and bought a beautiful icy blue fabric, pastel lace to overlay it with, a zipper, lustrous azure beads, thread, and white flower trim.

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I am by no means a sophisticated seamstress or even know the "correct" way to make patterns but I was fortunate to have a mom and grandma who let me freely play on a sewing machine growing up. I often even rejected patterns and just went with what felt right. So after I dusted off the old sewing machine I had been storing in the closet and surprisingly threaded it successfully, I got down to business with the "anything goes" concept.

Now for the great reveal.

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My Process

I first started by tracing a dress I already owned and liked on tissue paper leaving an extra inch all around to account for seams. I then folded the tissue paper at the center of the dress outline and cut on the pencil lines to make sure it was symmetrical. From here I played around with different shapes and lengths on the tissue paper by cutting within my dress shape to form my own unique dress. Once I felt content with the design I pinned the tissue paper pieces to the blue fabric and cut them out.

Next I began the sewing process. I sewed all the pieces together along with their identical lace segments I had cut. I pinned and tried the dress on often to ensure if fit like a glove because after all that's one of the perks of sewing your own clothing. I attached the zipper on the back and made sure I could easily slide in and out of the dress.

To complete the dress I cut the white flower trim and individually hand sewed them on the bodice and continued them down the front sides of the dress for continuity. To give the bodice flowers more attention and to create an ombre effect, I hand sewed the azure beads to the center of each blossom.

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Styling

To style the dress I paired it with opaque white tights, silver sparkly platform wedge sandals, and a thick over-sized white cable knit cardigan sweater. I wanted to keep the look icy, light and innocent, so it was important I kept the colors pastel.

In the last photo I paired the dress with a cropped top that ties in the back using a flowing train. My mom bought me this top as a cover-up to go over my wedding dress last October and I have been dying to wear it again every since. I'm excited I finally have an outfit that it works with that I can wear more than just once. I get to think of our wedding day every time I put it on!

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Overall, I was very happy with how this dress turned out. I love to create but often get caught up in the mediums I am comfortable with and forget to stretch my skill sets and imagination. This was a great reminder how trying something new can inspire me in the way I look at all realms of life.

I would love to hear what you have been inspired by creating lately? Am I the only one who bing watches Project Runway?


PHOTO CREDIT: Dustin Krotts

SILVER PLATFORM WEDGES (old by Guess)/Similar

OVER-SIZED CARDIGAN by For Love & Lemons

WHITE TIGHTS (old by American Apparel)/Similar