Jenny La Fleur
The Non-Gala Dress - Jenny La Fleur
adventures in costuming
The Non-Gala Dress
I have a confession to make. I have been keeping secrets. I've been working on my "non-gala" dress behind the scenes but now that I've started it in earnest I'm ready to share the fun!

I'm making a gown based on the purple gown above from Kyoto out of the $5 silk I got in LA. As ueal this project started with the fabric. I should probably call this the Pearl Dress, but really I think of it as the Queen Dress since Sally Queen spotted the fabric for me.

The embellishment will be done worked in pearls (inspired by the Queen Charlotte gown & the Regency court gown) and those tiny gold and silver sequins I love so much. I'd love to do glass pearls of course but I think that will be cost prohibitive. Also a little heavy for the silk. I may accent with some glass, sprinkled here and there but other than that plastic will have to do.

Originally I wanted a neoclassical design but after consulting with Bridget we decided I was silly to try and make this so hard and that I should just use the pattern from the court train. It's about the right date, it's already done in pearls and it's lovely. I feel like I'm cheating somehow, not coming up with an original design but B told me to just suck it up and go with the flow. So I am.

...And the tests. I was mostly playing with how I want to use the different sizes of pearls and what should be sequins and what pearls. The tambour frame is going to make this project so much easier - yay!

I'm really pleased as punch with this - so pretty! I'm still a little hesitant on the sequin leaves but Bridget assures me it's elegant sparkle not Vegas glitz. It's hard to tell but I think the correct fabric (top of picture) will help tone it down a bit. It's much more subtle on the silk.

I'm going to put the lace below the pattern, like in the pic, as the base of a bottom border. I am so itching to use my LA lace! I'm not entirely sure what I'm going to do there but I'm thinking a ziz-zag of some sort. Or I may just sprinkle pearls and sequins over the area. I don't want to waste my lace though so I'll do my testing on the actual thing.

So next step is to wash the silk and see if I like it stiff or soft. The pattern is all traced out from my new S&S pattern so I need to cut out a toile and go from there. I'm going to make up the dress and then embellish. I can't wait! :>

Oh and the diary for this project is up on my website now if you want to read all teh nitty gritty. The above is a re-cap. :>


10 comments | comment?
christylee From: christylee Date: October 5th, 2007 06:06 pm (UTC) (link)
That's going to be beautiful!
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: October 8th, 2007 02:45 pm (UTC) (link)
tailordrews From: tailordrews Date: October 5th, 2007 07:08 pm (UTC) (link)
Gosh what a beautifull thing to do! I have always loved the purple dress, its so gorgeous. They have a similar one in Museum of Decorative Arts in Copenhagen with polycrome silk embroidery.
A little advise, if you dont know already, weight is going to be an issue here, especially if your fabric is soft flowing. I think they made the "ribbon" in the bottom - to stabbilise the weight, also the quilted strip in the bottom is going to help a lot.
How wonderfull it is to be here in the forum, to see all the wonderfull things you jump into with such enthusiasme. Bravo!!!

jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: October 8th, 2007 02:45 pm (UTC) (link)
*blushes* Thanks! Good points on the stabilizing. My fabric is actually on the stiff side and the pearls light weight so I shouldn't have too many issues. I'll keep it in mind though as I go... Thanks!
suededsilk From: suededsilk Date: October 5th, 2007 07:46 pm (UTC) (link)
Oh my - how gorgeous! I've always loved that purple dress, and all the embroidery shots...*drool* What you've completed so far is stunning!
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: October 8th, 2007 02:43 pm (UTC) (link)
Thanks! The test piece wa fun to work on... makes me want to get going on the real thing!
sewingbird From: sewingbird Date: October 5th, 2007 10:01 pm (UTC) (link)
That's going to look beautiful on your silk! I don't think it will look Vegas at all. :)
operafantomet From: operafantomet Date: October 7th, 2007 08:37 am (UTC) (link)
Oooh, that's one of my favourite outfits from the whole book! And your fabric looks delicious. Can't wait to follow the progress of this one.
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: October 8th, 2007 02:42 pm (UTC) (link)
Thanks! Yes, I've been drooling over that dress for ages too - so pretty! :>
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: October 8th, 2007 02:43 pm (UTC) (link)
Thanks! It must just be me then. :>
10 comments | comment?