This dress started with the fabric.
I went to Tokyo last January, which of course led to much fabric shopping (too much if you are of the opinion of my boyfriend and have to give up suitcase space for “just a few more meters of cotton”). I spent the day in Heaven, aka Nippori, the fabric district. This dotted fabric appealed to me immediately, I love polka dots (like, obsessed if I’m honest). It feels like a silk cotton blend, it washed well so I’m sure there is some poly content, but it still feels luxurious to wear. Of course when I got home I was too nervous to actually use it, as I was plagued with doubts of “what if I mess it upppp?”. I also could not just do ‘anything’ with it, this fabric was special, it deserved the best.
After looking through my pattern stash and not finding anything that fit the bill, I decided to draft a dress. I knew I wanted a double layer skirt, a keyhole opening, soft kimono/grown-on sleeves and pleating at the waist. I started with the Colette Sencha Pattern as a base for the bodice and altered the sleeves to be slightly longer. I deepened the keyhole opening and finished it with self-fabric bias tape. I cut the pattern at the waist and added pleats on the double-layered skirt. For closure I added an invisible zipper to the back and finished the two layers with lace hem that I hand sewed down.
Of course I made a muslin out of the pattern. No way was I cutting into my Nippori Goodness without one. From it I deepened the keyhole opening more and removed some fabric out of the back. Clearly I didn’t remove quite enough as there is still some pooling in the back but not so much that a bad posture can’t help hide.
I like this dress but it does feel slightly more ‘grown up’ than I’m used to. I think that’s mostly the length, in order to wear it more I think I should take it up an inch, but as I hand sewed the hem that will take some motivation. Like maybe a new season of Project Runway? hmmMmm
Pattern: Self-drafted based on Colette Pattern’s Sencha
Materials: 2.2m black cotton blend, red and white bias tape, lace, 18’ black invisible zipper