Yay! I have an evening gown to show you!!!
I don’t know about you, but any social occasion that gives me the opportunity to dress up is top in my books! Formal wear is actually my favorite type of garment to make and thankfully I had a formal wedding to attend!
The pattern I used was Butterick 5987, an evening gown pattern that I picked up last year (Holiday 2013 collection I believe). I didn’t have any events pending at that time, but I’m a pattern
hoarder collector and buy patterns that appeal to me regardless if I will be using them any time soon. When some dear friends invited Mr H and I to their evening wedding, I was certain this would be the perfect dress — and it was!
This dress went together rather smoothly. The pattern is listed as an “easy” one and is definitely one that a beginner could attempt. It’s simple and yet fabulous at the same time. As you can see a little on the dress form photos that the side zip is pulling a little on the back. I actually went in between when I took these photos and when I wore this to do some hand sewing and fixed that. That problem had to do with the draping on the bodice and when I did some hand sewing on the shoulder drape, it fixed it.
The fabric I used was a plum silk voile from Fabric Mart, underlined with a poly diamond print light bronze lining. This pattern is meant for sheers and although my silk voile is not as sheer as a chiffon, I knew it would not be opaque and work very well for hinting slightly at the lining/underlining of the diamond print. I think it gives a subtle sheen and is an effect that makes the silk glisten.
The light gold metallic crochet trim is hand sewn on the waist. I found this at Britex Fabrics in San Francisco after looking at soooo many trims. I had initially planned on using a beaded trim and would have never thought of a crocheted trim until the extremely helpful associate at the trims counter showed it to me. Stupid me had forgotten to bring swatches of my dress fabrics, so I was very fortunate that I got an exact match after so much deliberation over the trims. I don’t know about you, but I feel so special when I get shown so many trims that are stacked so beautifully on a wall and brought down for me to see. I also bought some more trim that day to go with another special project that I’ll be making soon. 🙂
I didn’t feel like turning this dress inside out to show the inner workings. The bodice is lined and underlined and I made the skirt lining a little longer so that it would peak out a little under the silk voile. I French seamed everything. You can’t see it, but the inside fabric around the zip is fraying. I had meant to put some rayon seam binding on it and planned to pick some up in SF, but apparently forgot about it….. Pinking shears didn’t fix the problem, so I’ll be going back and fixing that as soon as I have some binding that matches (or coordinates) as I didn’t have any in my sewing room. Definitely need to do that before this gown goes to the dry cleaners.
The wedding we attended was a North Indian wedding with a Hindu ceremony. It was at a golf course in the Bay Area and was absolutely FABULOUS. Besides being breathtakingly beautiful, is was SO MUCH FUN. Dancing and scrumptious food paired with a heartfelt ceremony was so wonderful. Every detail was well thought out and my husband and I may have had the best time at this wedding than we have had at any other (not including our own!). I had asked the couple what the dress was when we received the invitation and I was told that many of the women would be wearing saris, and they sure were! I considered buying (or making) a sari, but decided that I wanted to wear something that could be worn again to another event.
I received many compliments whilst wearing this gown. Of course I was overshadowed by all of the gorgeous gals in their colorful saris, but apparently my dress did not go unnoticed. Someone asked a friend of mine where I had got my gown (I don’t know why they didn’t ask me!) and she told them that they won’t find it anywhere as it’s a one-of-a-kind and I made it! 🙂
In the top picture I noticed that this gown actually looks a little shorter on me than it is. The wind was blowing it around. I only wore those heels for the ceremony as they were killing my feet and I switched to some crystal and gold flats that also went well with my dress which made the hemline almost hit the floor. I probably should have worn those in the first place, but I do love to wear pretty heels. 🙂
This gown also feels like wearing silk pajamas. It’s extremely comfortable and the one shoulder draped bodice isn’t restrictive. It also covers modestly which is one thing that I really love. Plus, I never found myself fiddling with it to keep it up or anything. I wore a strapless bra with this that is the first strapless bra I’ve ever had that is comfortable. I wore it for 6+ hours and I didn’t have to adjust it or feel like my insides were about to explode. I’d even wear this strapless bra when I’m wearing a dress that doesn’t need it!!! If you’re interested, my bra is the Wacoal Red Carpet Full Figure Strapless Bra from Macy’s. It’s a little bit pricey, but well worth it.
I also made a matching clutch out of my dress fabrics and trim, which I’ll share a tutorial of next week. I’ve made many of these and they are the perfect accessory for formal wear.
And here’s Mr H and I! We did have another photo on our camera of us, but I don’t care for it too much, so here’s a selfie. We had professional photos of us taken at the wedding and at the sanjeet (pre-wedding party — the wedding festivities were all week) the night before, so I’m looking forward to seeing those! 🙂
- Dress: Butterick 5987 in plum silk voile, made by me
- Shoes: Nina
- Purse: self drafted, made by me
- Jewelry: Bauble Bar
- Polish: OPI 50 Years of Style (Ford Mustang Collection)