Of all the things I’ve made, this is my absolute favourite. Every time I put it on I feel good.
I first became aware of the Cynthia Rowley designs on the Burdastyle site sometime in 2010 and I’ve been a fan ever since. They’re lovely, clean, modern designs with none of that weird square fit that makes trad patterns so stuffy and, let’s be honest, uncool and matronly.
This dress looked more complicated to put together than it actually is. The gathered skirt has side pockets set in the seam and, as my fabric has quite a lot of body, gives it great shape and fullness.
The bodice is the best part, don’t be intimidated by it. It calls for lots of pleats and darts and tucks in the front but with a bit of patience and absolutely no rushing, it comes together with very little cursing. The pattern views don’t offer a strapless option but I decided it’s better off without straps, and it’s also surprisingly supportive! The top is slightly asymmetrical (in terms of the pleats and darts) and I love asymmetry in design, hides a multitude of sewing sins.
Necklace by ladybird likes . Beautiful things and well made.
The fabric is awesome. It claims to be “Dutch Wax Printed Cotton”. £2.99 a metre at The Wimbledon Sewing Centre. I really need to learn more about fabric rather than going on how drapey or heavy or synthetic something is. I think they’re supposed to be turkeys but a friend on facebook suggested they might be peacocks. What do you think?
The belt is quite straightforward but doubles nicely as headwear.
I’ve only worn this dress a few times as it’s one of those pieces of clothing that get a lot of attention. The first time I wore it, I ended up going bowling. Not advisable.
For some reason, the print reminds me of this mural on the corner of Roman Road and Zealand Road in East London. I have no idea who the artist is and I’d love to have this printed onto fabric.
I’m definitely making this again, but perhaps with a little less fullness in the skirt so it’s more fitted. I’ve already decided on a purple tie-dyed fabric (trust me, it looks better than it sounds).
*good luck to everyone quitting smoking in 2013. Don’t beat yourself up if you slip up. Every cigarette you don’t have will do you good!