Monday, January 10, 2011

Sewing Challenge: Paisley Sheath Dress

Ever since I saw Jean of Extra Petite in this J. Crew Paisley Dress, I've wanted my own version of a paisley sheath.  This one utilizes a gold/black paisley print brocade from Joann's and Butterick pattern B5314 - B.  You can't tell in the photo but I actually raised the hemline a teeny, tiny bit from my below the knee standard.  It is now mid-knee LOL.  Baby steps!

Dress: DIY
Obi Belt: The Limited (old)
Necklace: Gold Chain, Banana Republic (old)
Shoes: Gucci Embossed d'Orsay Pump, Camel

Now time for the question of the day - what is the best way to winterize this look?  What color cardi / tights / shoes?  Basic blacks or something different?

A close-up to show the gold/black paisley print

My new dress form is here!
On the left, we have my old dress form (rigid) and on the right is my new one (pinnable).

I love my new dress form so much!  She has much more realistic proportions (the old one is so Barbie!) with a longer torso like me, has a more stable base, can be shortened to my height (the height here is 5'2" but I've since raised her 2" to reflect me + heels), has a prettier neck block, and is pinnable.  I am so excited to try draping on her!


  1. wow, the paisley pattern on this dress is stunning! i'm in love with the details. i think some burgundy tights would bring out the rich hues of the pattern as well as a gold cardi.

    you're so talented! :)

  2. I second Kileen, the print is GORGEOUS. I couldn't tell in the first two pics but the close up of the fabric is breath taking! So lovely and I like the length a lot. :)

  3. New year, new time to try something different, right? Love the shorter length on you. I noticed the difference right away :P The print is absolutely gorgeous and the obi belt is a nice touch. Honestly the way you styled it now looks great. But if you were to wear tights, black would work well with the belt. Like Kileen said, burgundy would be really pretty good. Maybe even a rich brown.

    So happy to see you excited about the new dress form. First Kelly's and now yours... I want one just to dress it up, no sewing for me ;)

  4. Wow! That's gorgeous fabric! You are so talented! Are you using a pattern? The dress is amazing! I say go with black for a moody sophisticated look.

  5. I love this dress! It looks so luxe and vibrant. I think pairing it with colors already in the pattern can be a simple way of pulling an outfit together. Maroon, forest green, and other similar colors would also compliment the dress really well! =)

  6. Jean's dress has caught my eye, too! I love paisley!

    You did an excellent job on the dress! I love the belt! It adds some edginess to the dress!

    As for as accessories...basic black will definitely work. If you want something different...I agree with stylepint on the colors....those would be gorgeous!

  7. Oh my that is BEAUTIFUL! And I love the new hem line :) You look beautiful. I can see a mustard coloured cardigan working...I'm trying to branch out into coloured tights so I am no help there!

    Love the dress forms...I can't sew at all but I'm so wanting one as room decor LOL!

    Said it before but I'll keep saying it - you are so talented! You definitely have a fan in me!

  8. I am in love with your Obi belt! The dress is GORGEOUS!!!

  9. Love the dress! Did you draft it or use a pattern. Fantastic fabric.

    Would you mind emailing me info on your dress form? I really want one and am looking for recs. TIA!

  10. oh wow what a gorgeous dress. the print is really nice and i love that color on you. so classy!

  11. Amazing! Do I say that a lot on your blog? LOL I love paisley!!! The color is gorgeous!

  12. Kileen - Thank you! I definitely need to try some colored tights! Thankfully, that's not going to bust my budget :)

    Elle - Thanks so much! From afar, the print definitely kind of melds together and looks much better in real life.

    Cee - Hehehe on noticing the hem difference ;) I might venture to F21 this weekend to check out their tights selection. Thanks for the suggestions! I got my dress form on Ebay from seller EasyBuy2All. Just make sure you check the measurements unless you want it purely for decor rather than as your clothing double.

    Petite Mom - Thank you for the kinds words and suggestion! This dress uses Butterick Pattern B5314, view B. The only pattern I can draft free-hand is a basic sleeveless shell LOL.

    Stylepint - Thank you! I'll definitely have to try those colors. The print is actually just gold and black, but I think the maroon and green will also work nicely with it!

    Michelle - Thank you very much! I love this little blogger community - I get so much inspiration from each and every one of you :)

  13. Curls-and-Pearls - Aww, thank you for the sweet words! Mustard is a fab idea! I'm also going to be trying colored tights - we can join in on this adventure together :)

    I got my dress form on Ebay - try looking there or Kelly from AN recently did a review on one too! Here's a link to mine:

    April - Thanks so much - that's very kind of you to say :)

    Lakaribane - Thank you! I used Butterick pattern 5314, view B. I got my dress form on Ebay from seller EasyBuy2All. Just make sure you check the measurements unless you want it purely for decor rather than as your clothing double. Here's a link:

    Ping - Thank you Ping, you're so sweet! :)

    Really Petite - LOL, you are always too nice to me :)

  14. That paisley print is beautiful! I've always been drawn to paisley brocades. I just discovered a huuuge fabric outlet warehouse near me. I went there yesterday and was admiring all the paisley fabrics. If only I knew how to sew... :)

  15. ooh, the print is nice! i love your d'orsay's too winterize, tall black boots would be the fastest easiest way for me, or or for spunkier look, maybe like black tights and turquoise heels or like those bright purple pumps that I think I remember seeing on one of your posts :) That's all my limited creativity can think of, hehe

  16. I love this. This is the kind of style I gravitate to. I tried sewing with that kind of fabric once but it was disaster. However, it was only my second sewing project ever, so I think I may have improved in the last 2 years.

    I've got something similar in silver/gold with paisleys in my stash but I am waiting for the right moment to sew it. I am stuck at home today because of the snow (school/work cancelled - YAY!) so I am going to sew a new dress. I just have to decide on which fabric I am going to use and which pattern.

  17. Cindy - Thanks for dropping by and commenting! I also love the richness of a brocade fabric :) If you're interested in sewing, you should try a class! I'm lucky to have my mom here to show me the ropes.

    Olyvia - Thanks so much! Ooooh I really like the idea of black tights with bright shoes!

    Kerry - I had a few issues with the fabric.
    1. I had some rough skin patches on my hand (damn winter air!) that kept getting caught on the fabric. I felt like I was going to ruin the whole thing by touching it too much.
    2. Holy cow, the fraying! Very sensitive to too much handling, but ultimately the pattern had very few pieces to it so that helped.
    I do like how it turned out though. I think the collar is my favorite part. I'm so looking forward to your snow day project! I love seeing your creations and find them very inspirational. :)

  18. What a gorgeous dress! It definitely reminds me of Jean's dress... and I'd encourage you to continue hemming upwards! :P Congrats on the new dress form! Is it one with custom measurements?

  19. That is a gorgeous dress! And I love the dress form. I want one, where can I find it?


  20. Liane - Thanks so much! The last few items have been mid-knee - I hope to slowly work on my weird phobia LOL. Actually I found the dress form on Ebay labeled as "small" and the measurements are really close to mine (except I am less bosom-y). My favorite part is that the proportioning (torso length, waist to hip length, etc.) mirrors me exactly :)

    A. Li - Thank you for dropping by and commenting - I really do appreciate each and every comment I receive :) I got my dress form on Ebay from seller EasyBuy2All. Here's a link:


I'm the type of gal who gets giddy when I receive mail - it's no different with comments! I really appreciate the feedback and love hearing from you :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...