sewing saturday! brocade holiday dress, part one

sewing saturday - brocade dress

I've been really bad at keeping up with Sewing Saturday posts lately (the last one was back in September), but now that the holidays are coming up I intend on sticking to a weekly project, I promise.. this is the best time of the year to sew, after all - holiday dresses and jackets and velvet and wool!

So I'm skipping ahead to a seasonal project I'm excited about. After starting two different projects and not having the drive to finish either of them, I thought I would take a break from them and sew this dress for Thanksgiving wear. Simplicity 6788 is a fancy cocktail dress pattern from the 1960s and while the Thanksgiving festivities at my family's house aren't that dressy, I hope to dress this particular ensemble down by wearing a white button up underneath and using the dress more like a jumper (in true Alexa Chung style).

sewing saturday - brocade dress sewing saturday - brocade dress

The fabric is a navy and gold brocade purchased from Mood Fabrics. It was the other half of my order a week or so back when I bought the metallic silver linen. It has a great medium weight for a structured dress, so the soft pleats at the skirt will suit it really well.

What you need.. about two yards of brocade, a 16 inch neck zipper, lining for the bodice, and interfacing for the top half of the skirt. The pattern suggested lining the skirt with taffeta but I had none, so I'm using good old-fashioned interfacing. Honestly the skirt probably won't need it because the brocade fabric is so stiff on its own (and I believe the point of the interfacing is to give a stiff feel to the skirt), but I went ahead and added it in anyway.

sewing saturday - brocade dress

First step, I cut out all the pieces including interfacing for both skirt pieces and bodice lining. Then, I sewed the bodice pieces and bodice lining pieces together at their shoulder seams, and sewed the interfacing (non fusible, by the way) to the wrong side of the skirt pieces at the top, within the seam allowance.

sewing saturday - brocade dress sewing saturday - brocade dress sewing saturday - brocade dress

Then, dart time. Total of 12 darts including lining. I marked the darts in place using chalk then sewed them up and pressed them flat and inward with an iron.

sewing saturday - brocade dress sewing saturday - brocade dress sewing saturday - brocade dress

That's all the progress for this weekend.. next time, I'll finish it up by piecing everything together, sewing in soft pleats to the skirt, and adding the zipper to the back. It's actually a pretty straightforward pattern, can't wait to see how it turns out.

And just because I'm way too thrilled with this 1920s sewing pattern to keep it to myself anymore - here is a sneak peek of a future project!

sewing saturday - 1920s coat pattern