Saturday, June 21, 2014

Midsummer Cascade

You know how it goes: there's a new make in your closet, you go out and take 1,000 pictures and pick the 5 that make the garment look the best (and you) then post those on the blog.  The rest get deleted.  But, what if your new make looked amazing in every single photo?  Even when it's overcast and wet and kind of squinty outside and the sun keeps going in and out?  Get ready for photo overload, because that's exactly what happens when you combine the Midsummer Night's Dream dress from Papercut and the Cascade skirt from Megan Nielsen.




I made this dress up as part of indie pattern month on The Monthly Stitch. (Vote for me!)  This week's theme was franken-pattern, so I mashed up two beautiful patterns from two different designers and got this beauty.



I've been craving a racy, flowy, thigh baring dress since the Anna dress came out, but after two muslins, it just wasn't doing it for me.  For some reason, it makes me look kind of dowdy and overwhelms my upper body.  I don't know what the problem is since it looks great on everyone else.  And, in case you're wondering, it's not just me.  Man friend says it looks fine, I just look a bit Amish.  Sorry, not the look I'm going for here.



So, I gave up on my thigh baring dreams for a summer, and finally made up my first cascade skirt a couple of weeks ago (unblogged).   Pretty much life changing in the thigh-baring department.  I love it and wear it all the time.  It's beautiful, comfortable, and just so perfect for my summer lifestyle. 



Naturally, this got the wheels in my head turning for a dramatic summer dress.  What could I do to turn this beauty into a dress?  A quick look at my pinboard pattern stash (god I love pinterest) made me think that a mashup just might work.  Plus, papercut patterns usually fit me well out of the package, so I figured not much could go wrong.



Except I needed 4 yards of drapey fabric.  Maybe you shop differently than I do, but I don't typically buy things in 4 yard increments.  I'm exactly 5 feet tall, so 2 yards is usually more than enough for a dress on my frame.  I searched my local haunts and didn't find anything suitable. 1 week to go, and I thought I'd just have to sit this contest out.



Thank the sewing gods for Sally.  She went to an epic warehouse sale a few weeks ago, and gifted me this beautiful vintage silk sari when she heard my dilemma.  It was so, so, so perfect for this project!  The silk drapes beautifully, but is a little nubby so it wasn't really difficult to work with.  It also gets bonus points for feeling like heaven next to my skin.



If you've never worked with a sari, I highly recommend it.  It's a lot of fabric, so you'll have plenty for whatever you need.  Both edges were printed with a border print, and one edge had a yard square of a contrast print.  I, personally, love working with border prints and contrast prints but they can be so hard to pull together when they don't "go" together.  The sari pretty much solved that problem for me, since all of the color schemes are the same.



I am 100% in love with this dress, and can't wait to wear it somewhere fancy.  If you're looking for a fast, easy, dramatic dress, this mashup is totally it! 


Details:
Patterns: Midsummer Night's Dream from Papercut
               Cascade from Megan Nielsen
Sizes: XS on top, S on bottom
Alterations: NONE for fit!  I did make some slight changes, though:
                 -Serged and stitched the bodice instead of bias binding it
                 -The skirt is about 2 inches shorter than the bodice, so I put that edge on the inside :)



All kidding aside, though, don't wear this one out on a windy day in Chicago... you might end up looking more like this:



44 comments:

  1. i wouldn't mind if you posted 1067 photos of you wearing this dress, it's a mindblowing one, and you're such a bombshell in it! amazing job and amazing dress (and i can see you enjoy wearing it, that smile is the greatest accessory ever)

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  2. That is a gorgeous dress! I love the mashup and I want to know where this warehouse is so I can get some awesome sari fabric!

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  3. This happens every time I wear my Cascades...silly Windy City, living up to its name every time.

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  4. That is one amazingly gorgeous dress! I was wondering what you were planning on mashing-up with the Midsummer Night's Dream - brilliant combination! I kinda really want to go make one myself, haha!


    (Also, no such thing as photo overload with this dress. It's total sewing eye-candy!)

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  5. You look fabulous, I really like the fabric you've chosen for it!

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  6. gorgeous! what an inspired mashup. love how it came out!

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  7. Thank you so much! I kind of wanted to post 1067 photos, but 12 took long enough to upload!

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  8. She went to a sale from a woman's personal stash who had sewn for a living her entire life and needed to clear out her warehouse of fabric! Apparently it was epic, but I missed it too!

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  9. EVERY TIME!! I've taken to wearing my nettie with mine so I don't flash everyone my undies :)

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  10. Mwahhahaha! Franken patterns are the best! Seriously, though, if it wasn't for TMS I never would have made this up, so thanks for the challenge! I'm sure this would be the most comfortable fancy maternity dress if you had somewhere to go!

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  11. When the Nettie first came out I thought, "What could I possibly need that for?" Little did I know...

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  12. This is absolutely amazing! I love, love this! I've been looking for a wrap dress. After trying the flora it wasn't for me, but this one is stunning! Great idea. I think this is my FAVORITE Patten smash up! Bravo! You look beautiful, and the fabric is to die for!

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  13. This is gorgeous! Love the different prints and the combo of patterns.

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  14. This is GORGEOUS!! I absolutely love the fabric, and the shape of the bodice. The wrap-over bodice is perfect. Lynne

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  15. This is SO SO VERY incredibly beautiful! And you look AMAZING in it! I have the cascade skirt pattern but never would have thought to combine it with midsummer for this gloriousness!

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  16. EXCUSE ME THIS IS FABULOUS! i have both these patterns, and you could not have inspired me more!!! Thank you soo much!!

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  17. What a beautiful, beautiful dress! And how awesome is Sally?!!? What a great friend.


    I have made the Cascade skirt before, but never would have thought about making it into a dress. I like how you think!

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  18. Auuugh this is SOOOOO GORGEOUS!!!! What a brilliant mashup! You totally look 6' tall in these photos, btw - those blue heels are rockin'! YOU ARE ALL THE SEXY!

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  19. What a stunning dress! It looks amazing on you, so clever to put those two patterns together!

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  20. this dress is awesome!!!! Love it! I own both these patterns. I've made 2 skirts, but have yet to make the dress!

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  21. So jealous! Even though you couldn't go, you lucked out for sure because that sari is amazingness. I came back here to reply and was in love with it all over again when I saw it! The depth of color on the silk is just stunning.

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  22. Thank you! I wasn't too sure about it because I wasn't sure how the beige would look next to my face, but I think it turned out okay :) The wind was scary, but I think it actually helped the photos!

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  23. Thanks! If you don't mind my asking, what went wrong with the flora? I've been thinking about ordering it, but haven't seen the wrap bodice on any other busty gals (other than the model). This would be SUCH a great bridesmaid dress, with the adjustable waist you can eat all the cake you want :)

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  24. Thanks! It's all the beauty of the sari!

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  25. Haha thanks! Try it out! NOTHING could possible go wrong!

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  26. Thank you! And thanks for that last bit...I needed to hear it. The amish style is just not for me :)

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  27. Thanks!

    Seriously, @thequirkypeach is the greatest ever. I highly reccomed you all move to Chicago and impose sewing Sundays upon her...

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  28. All because of youuuuuu! We should have an Anna/ Cascade dress photo shoot just so people can see how short I am in real life.

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  29. Thank you! You should give it a try!

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  30. I think we should petition to rename it the Chicago shirt...

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  31. Um, want that dress! Good to know about the Papercut patterns, since I know we're similar in shape!

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  32. It's something so ridiculously minor. I love the design, the fit was off. I didn't like all the wrinkles on the bodice. No matter what I did, I couldn't get rid of them, and it drove me crazy!

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