Saturday, 26 January 2013

Making my elegant escape



While browsing the Pattern Review website recently, I came across a call for pattern testers for this adorable dress - the 'elegant escape dress' by Savage Coco patterns (this link has the free pattern and instructions). I've always wanted to have a go at pattern testing. It's so exciting to be one of the first people to make something. Also, the pattern was in my size. I was in! I downloaded and printed the pattern quick smart before Savage Coco could change her mind!

The dress design was inspired by one worn by Romy Schneider in the movie 'La Piscine'. It is a simple sheath dress made more stylish and interesting by the addition of shoulder piecing, side gussets and lots of top-stitching.


The pattern states that is is made to fit a 5'4 woman with a 34 inch bust. I am more like 5'9 with a 36 inch bust but I think the dress is a perfect fit on me.  I didn't make any changes to the sizing apart from adding a few centimetres to the length, just in case, and taking in the back centre seam a bit in the lower back section.


The other change I made was to leave the dress unlined. I have a couple of lined dresses and I never wear them as it's just too hot in Perth for a lined dress. On cooler days, I prefer to have my legs covered so don't wear them then either. I finished the neckline and arm holes with some lycra binding used as bias binding.

To compensate for the lack of lining, I used a medium to heavy weight fabric for the dress. Now Ikea fans may recognise this fabric from their upholstery range. Let's just say that I can't sit next to certain cushions in my house while wearing this dress and leave it at that! Apart from looking like a cushion, I think the colour of the fabric is lovely and the print is not so busy as to obscure the topstitching on the dress. I love the topstitching on this dress.


I cut the pocket flaps (these are pretend pockets) and side gussets from some unprinted pieces of my fabric for contrast. I tacked the pocket flaps down with a single thread on either side to hold them in place. Unfortunately my son broke the threads on one pocket just before these pictures were taken. "Why are there no pockets in there mummy?"


I wore this dress yesterday to visit the 'Unveiled' wedding dress exhibition at the WA museum. I went with my Mum and we both spent a very happy hour or two admiring the designs and workmanship of wedding dresses from the 1800s to the modern day. A most delightful girly outing. 


I felt fittingly glamourous in my 'elegant escape dress'. I love the style and the dress is so cool, comfortable and flattering to wear. It skims over all lumps and bumps and just feels fabulous. The dress was moderately time consuming to make but not overly difficult. The tutorial pictures and instructions are very helpful. Thank you to Savage Coco for the opportunity to try this lovely pattern.

14 comments:

  1. Megan,

    Your Elegant Escape is OUTSTANDING on you! The fit is terrific and very flattering. I love how you matched the leaves at the seams. Really, really terrific job. Thanks for testing the Escape. I am so glad you had success with the pattern. Steer clear of a certain sofa though-it's important for a girl not to blend too much into the background. Enjoy!

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    1. Your compliments mean a lot. Thank you so much :)

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  2. I really like a loose dress on a hot day and I definitely hear you on the lining. The only lined dresses I wear are winter ones that I mended lined because if tights etc. I love your new dress. I might have to hunt this pattern out!

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    1. I think you should try this one, I can imagine it looking good on you. I wonder if a cotton lining might be more comfortable. I have only worn taffeta ones.

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  3. It looks so simple and elegant. I think I may try this one...and I love the topstitching down the center.

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    1. Thank you. I think the top stitching is even better in real life. Yes, give it a try :)

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  4. What an elegant looking dress. Love how it turned out with the printed fabric. I have just the thing to make this dress from! I've just printed out the pattern, but it might have to wait a while til I get up the courage to make myself a dress!

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    1. Aw come on - I've seen some of the creations on your blog and I think you could do it! I would love to see how it turns out WHEN you make it :)

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    2. Thanks for the encouragement Meg. I know I can do it, it's just that I haven't worn dresses since before I had kids. It's the post baby belly that's the problem (4 years on)! I feel awkward in a dress, so making one for myself just doesn't seem right. I have made a start on it though, and will make a toile first. Just need someone to fit it on me! The blog post seems to be writing itself too - I'll let you know when it's up!

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    3. And the dress is done! I thought you might to take a look at the dress I made from this pattern. Thanks for the inspiration!

      http://obsessivecreativeness.blogspot.com/2013/02/stash-busting-dress-for-me.html

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  5. I love this dress and your choice of fabric.You look great in it and it looks cool as well and perfect for an Australian summer. I think I too will print out the pattern too. I am glad you enjoyed wearing it and feeling very special in it.

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    1. Ooh I hope you do give it a try. I would love to see the results . Thank you for the comment :)

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  6. What a lovely dress: cool and sophisticated. The colour of the fabric is great and really suits you. The print reminds me of Boden (but it's IKEA?! Must get!).

    My children wouldn't approve of mock pockets though: they believe they're entitled to use my pockets as little bins for their food wrappers and junk!

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    1. Thank you! Excellent that it looks more like Boden and less like the sofa cushions! Yes, it's funny how children don't quite appreciate the finer points of fashion :)

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