Remember the striped fabric in my last post? Here is the project! About two years ago, I saw a dress that Quinn Fabray on Glee wore which I loved:
It’s no longer available (and waaay out of my price range when it was), so I attempted to emulate the look. The dress is an Eva Franco design; you see a lot of her stuff at Anthropologie and on Modcloth. What I love:
-warm, pastel, rainbow color palette
-Square design on the bust
-Vertical striped skirt
-Overall whimsical, yet sophisticated, design
I found this striped fabric at Hart’s which I thought could do the trick:
To get the boat neck bodice, I used the bodice from the Colette Truffle Dress pattern, and raised the neckline about 2 inches. The pattern is from the Colette Sewing Handbook, which I highly recommend! The hardest part of the dress though, was making the square bust design.
My first instinct was to cut the bodice pattern into the four sections, arrange them appropriately on the fabric, cut out each piece, then sew the pieces of the bodice together. However, my mom had the wonderful idea to “make” the stripey square fabric first, then cut out the bodice from that. To make the fabric, I cut two squares that were large enough to encompass the bodice (about 21″ x 21″). Then, I cut each of these diagonally across the square. More specifically, I lined up the 45 degree line on my clear ruler with the stripes on the fabric. This results in four triangles with the correct stripe orientation, and four triangle with the wrong stripe orientation. Here are the four correctly oriented triangles aligned how I will sew them:
Then, I sewed the four triangles with the correct orientation together, and the four triangles with the wrong orientation together to create two new squares. I put the front bodice pattern piece on the sewn together fabric and viola! I now have my desired square design on the bust:
To make sure the square location was flattering and not awkward-attention-drawing (if you get my drift), I placed the center of the square about 1.5″ higher than the location of the bust darts. The stripes didn’t exactly match up to make boxes like Quinn’s dress, but since my stripes weren’t in rainbow order, I didn’t think it would be a big deal. To achieve this, it would have taken more fabric. I used the “wrong” stripe orientation for the lining of the bodice. No one will see it but me, so that worked out great. I sewed up the rest of the bodice as in the Truffle Dress pattern instructions. Instead of making the fitted skirt that comes with the pattern, I drafted a pleated skirt. Here is the finished product!
The back is the only thing that gave me problems. It gaped open so much that I ended up taking in the shoulder strap about 3 inches on both sides. Because of this, the neck line ended up being more boat neck-y than I anticipated. In fact, the whole bodice was a bit looser than I expected. It’s comfy and casual though, so I don’t mind it. Any suggestions for how to fix a gaping back in the future?
The original dress has a skinny, bright orange belt. I like the orange, but I might go for a lilac or lime green! I think it would compliment my fabric. Overall, I’m very happy with how the dress turned out! It captures the particular essence I loved about Quinn’s dress, and is something I can wear on an every day basis.