Thursday, 20 March 2014

Palm fronds and Laurel


A summery day always feels better in a summery dress and what better than one printed with palm fronds to lighten the spirit?

Colette pattern information
This is my second version of the Colette Laurel dress and I'm every bit as happy with the pattern as I was the first time I made it.


The fabric is a border-print, polyester remnant from Textile Traders that cost me $2. I've had it for quite a while and have held it up while peering in the mirror countless times trying to decide what to make. I know, big decision after such a financial outlay, but surely any piece of fabric should be treated with respect and consideration!


I couldn't be happier with the choice to make a Laurel. It's simple so the fabric can shine, but the cut looks stylish and classic.


 I made a few changes to the pattern: the neckline was lowered quite a bit; the bust darts were also lowered, but perhaps need to go lower still (or else I need to hoist up my bra straps); the side seams were taken in tapering from the waist to approximately 4cm in at the hem; the length was increased by about 5cm and finished with a very narrow hem (and it's still short!); and flutter sleeves were added.


The sleeves were a bit of an afterthought. I made them very simply using the scrap of fabric left over from cutting the neckline of the back dress piece. The back pattern piece had been placed against the edge of the fabric before cutting leaving a semi-circular scrap. I cut three more identical pieces, sewed each pair together along the curved edge and attached them to the arm holes (no gathers). The entire arm hole edge was then finished with bias binding and top stitched to match the neckline. I think it balances the dress quite nicely. I also like the hemline of the dress, which is slightly curved and lower at the back (this is unchanged from the original pattern).


 I didn't have much fabric to work with but, learning from past mistakes, I tried to place the front and back so the print was in a flattering place.


I think it worked out pretty well.


I wore this last weekend when we walked by the Swan River near Perth City. You can see the progress of Elizabeth Quay in the background to the right of me. This huge development is underway to dig out a large area of land, flood the area with water and make an upmarket cafe, restaurant, hotel and ferry district on the waterfront. Watch out Sydney Harbour!!


 Let's hope autumn stays lovely and sunny so I can wear this a few more times.

29 comments:

  1. Great pictures (I must visit sometime!!) and great use of print too. The sleeves are a nice touch. Must make a Laurel for 2014!

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    1. Yes you must - visit AND make a Laurel that is!

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  2. What a gorgeous dress, and amazing views. I love all the photos that Perth bloggers take, they always look so amazing!

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    1. Wow thank you! It's not hard to take good pictures with the scenery we have here, but actually I think it might be something to do with the light or the endless blue skies or something. Maybe I'll ask a photographer one day.

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  3. Very interesting print. I did a double take for a moment because I thought the pictures were taken in Sydney..all skylines look the same!

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    1. Ha! That's funny since Perth is trying to raise its profile to be more on a par with Sydney. Hopefully my dress is helping the cause!

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  4. Very interesting print. I did a double take for a moment because I thought the pictures were taken in Sydney..all skylines look the same!

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  5. What a perfect use of such a lovely fabric! Everything about this dress is just perfect! Love, love, love this!

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    1. Wow, thank you for the lovely comment!

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  6. ..."learning from past mistakes" (snigger). Yes, much better. Talk about turning a $2 sows ear into a silk dress!

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    1. Snigger indeed!! Yes, I do love a bargain.

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  7. love love this dress! Great use of the fabric and you placement of the leaves was just perfect!

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  8. I love what you did with the sleeves on this Laurel! It's really playful and summery.

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    1. Thank you. I'm pleased you think the sleeves are good, I wasn't totally sure when I added them.

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  9. I love this dress! The fabric was made for this style.

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    1. Oh yes, I do love that remnant bin. You never know what treasures you'll find.

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  10. The dress looks great! Really looks like vacation type of dress - so fun!

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    1. Great idea - now where can I go on vacation!

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  11. You have created a wonderful dress. I love all the changes you have made to the pattern - they suit the fabric beautifully.

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    1. Thank you so much for reading and commenting.

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  12. Replies
    1. Wow, praise indeed from you! Thank you.

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  13. That dress looks wonderfully simple and pretty.

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    1. Thank you. I think it's pretty because it's wonderfully simple!

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  14. I love this palm print and simple shift together. Easy Breezy Beautiful!

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  15. Perfect use of the fabric, I love the rounded square neckline, and the fit is really great in this version. Those sleeves are really the cherry on top!

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  16. Hi, just wanted to say I love your blog and have nominated it for a Liebster award http://sallybeemakes.blogspot.co.uk/2014/03/ive-been-in-bit-of-sewing-and-blogging.html

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Thank you for taking the time to comment. I value every single one.

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