This dress was inspired by the fabric. I got it from my mom, who inherited it from my grandmother. Apparently my grandmother used to buy fancy fabric from a place in Pennsylvania, and this was one that never got used. There is a actually a ton of it; I didn’t measure it, but it I would estimate there were 5-7 yards of it. It is a plain weave silk, but I’m not sure exactly how to classify it. Since it has a slightly stiff drape, I’m calling it a “light” taffeta.
— sewing —
When I first got this fabric, I was pretty stumped by it. I am more of jewel tone person, so the light orange color didn’t really inspire me. That was until I has the idea to use it as the backdrop to a sunset. If I could find an ombré fabric with sunset colors, I thought it could work. Enter the amazing B and J fabrics (if you ever just was to ogle really beautiful fabric, it is the best). I found the fabric originally online, but I actually bought it at their store in New York. It was pricey, but since I only needed a small amount and the rest of the fabric was free, I figured it evened out. They no longer have the exact one I got, but this is close.
I love Marfy patterns and had pinned some of my favorites awhile ago. Marfy 2731 seemed the perfect match for my vision since the gores of the skirt could feature the ombré, with the rest made of the main light orange. I did a muslin of the bodice, but managed to miss some glaring fit problems around the armhole that I had to fix very quick-and-dirty later. I’m still working on my fitting skills.
Marfy, of course, has no instructions, but most of the dress construction was very straightforward. The only tricky part was those doubled straps. (Sewing the chiffon into the gores was technically difficult, but not hard from a concept standpoint.) I’m still not sure I did them right.
All the flaws in the top ended up not mattering too much because the light orange color was really not flattering near my face. I ended up having a full width half yard of the ombré left, so I hemmed it to use as a scarf/pashmina type thing. I think it much improves the look of the dress.