Look #2 – Tough Chic
This Calvin Klein dress is my first scuba/body con piece and I must say I really love it so far. It’s comfortable and very forgiving. I’m a little self conscience about my little stomach pooch but once I added the black moto it became a non issue.
What I especially love about this dress is where the seam hit my waistline. I’m short waisted and this dress fits like its custom made for my body. The skirt length is perfect for any occasion.
- Gold chandelier earrings – Thrifted $.99
- Gold sparkly Guess Signature Pumps – Purchased at Local Ross for around $30
- Black Moto Jacket – Purchased at K&G clearance around $15
- Gold Framed Steve Madden Sunglasses-purchased at Local Ross $9.99
Look #1 – Park Avenue Chic
NOTHING works harder in my wardrobe than my LBDs. I purchased this little black number at a local TJMaxx for around $40. It’s constructed of scuba and made by Calvin Klein.
- B&W Color Block Purse – purchased on the streets of NYC
- B&W Geometric Jessica Simpson Pumps – purchased on sale for around $40
- White Statement Necklace – purchased from walmart for $7
- White Tahari Blazer – Thrifted
THE BACK STORY (In Case you’re Interested)
My mom was a practical sort of person when it came to dressing. When it came to clothing and accessories, she tended to favor pieces that could easily be mixed and matched and also worn on all occasions. Most of her skirts, dresses, and accessories were black. All of her coats were what she liked to call “All Weather Coats”. They were these tan coats with zip out linings made by London Fog. (I now HATE these coats)
While we were growing up I can’t recall her ever owning or wearing any pretty, fancy, or sparkly pieces. When it came to dressing me and my two sisters, she kept with her practical nature.
There was one occasion when my older sister and I had been invited to a formal dance party hosted by one of our friends. We were around 15 & 16 years old. For this special occasion she decided to hire another seamstress to make our dresses. Although my sister and I had hoped that we would be getting fancy dresses made, my mom had decided that a fancy dress that could only be worn once would just not be practical. She had a light blue knee length linen dress made for me and a lavender knee length linen dress made for my sister. When we walked into that party, I think that we were the only girls there not wearing formal dresses. We both could have just died! Need I say we were both scarred for life.
Fast forward some 30 years later ….. Because of this experience, when I go out or attend a party I might occasionally err on the side of being overdressed.
Back in January, a girlfriend and I watched this old Bette Davis Movie – “What about Eve?” Fashion-wise it was a great movie. In fact, I think that we both paid more attention to the gorgeous dresses that the ladies were wearing than we did to the actual plot of the movie. (Shame on Us!)
After watching the movie, she and I decided that it would be fabulous if we could get all dressed up “Old Hollywood” style and attend one of our local theaters – the Fabulous Fox! She and I often joke that instead of us needing the perfect outfit to wear to the occasion, we need the perfect occasion to go with our outfit!
About a week later my girl was able to get us tickets to attend the Alvin Ailey Revelations show at the Fox Theater and the rest is history as they say.
The Alvin Ailey show truly was the perfect occasion for the dress!
- Black Sparkly Clutch – Purchased from Marshall’s for around $17
- Vintage Rhinestone Earrings – Borrowed from my sister
- Vintage Rhinestone Bracelet – Borrowed from my sister
- Vintage Gold Toned Rhinestone Pin – Borrowed from my sister
- Black & Gold Guess Pumps – Purchased from Ross for around $30 – (After seeing the pics I think that I should have gone with my Black Sparkly Guess Ankle Strap heels)
Misses/Misses Petite Leanne Marshall Collection
Pattern Sizing:<I cut 12. It is kind of roomy in the bodice. I may have been able to get away with a 10.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes For the Most Part.
Were the instructions easy to follow?
They were pretty easy..except I got super confused when doing the collar. I ended up putting the instructions aside and working it out on my own.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I really LOVE everything about this dress.
Fabric Used: cotton & lace
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I only added lace to the bodice and I eliminated the pockets and loop at the collar. I plan to wear it open or with a vintage brooch at the neck. I shortened the bodice about an inch.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I plan to sew view B for my daughter . I may sew it again for myself.. who knows.
When I was growing up, I remember my mom making me and my older sister two piece dresses consisting of a simple pull over shell and gathered skirt. This outfit was inspired by those memories. Now that I am a busy working mom of 3, I can see why she sewed us pieces like these……. because they are so quick and easy!
In addition to being quick and easy, pieces like these can be easily styled and mixed with other wardrobe pieces.
I used Butterick 5211 to make the pullover top and I self drafted the pleated Midi skirt. I am in the process of coming up with my own pattern for a pleated skirt. This is my first prototype. Once I have it perfected, I will post a tutorial.
I used view A to make my top. I cut a size 10. I initially cut the pattern at the line for shortening/lengthening the waist. Once I had the pieces put together, I removed an additional 5 inches from the bottom . The top is pullover so no zipper required!
One of the many ways that I plan to wear this outfit is shown above. The pieces are so basic that there are several possibilities.
Next Up On The Blog: Kimono Jacket (Made By Me)
I was super excited to find this plaid flannel shirt at my local big box discount store for only $7.88.
I rolled up the sleeves and popped the collar and paired it with a black pencil skirt and pair of classic black pumps.
Up Next On The Blog: Camel 2 piece dress (Made By Me)
My husband and I just recently celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary. I wanted to make a dress to wear that I could dress up for the occasion but also wear dressed down for other occasions.
Even though its winter, I didn’t want to make anything long sleeve because I figured that short sleeve or sleeveless would be the most versatile because it could be layered for cooler months and worn as is in warmer months.
I decided to use a Charcoal Gray colored Men’s wool suiting blend for my dress. It drapes and holds pleats beautifully. It is light to medium weight and was very comfortable to wear in 39 degree here. I imagine that I should be able to wear this dress at least 3 seasons.
This dress was made by combining the bodice of Project Runway Simplicity 1610 with the Skirt of Mimi G. Simplicity 1159 (pleated instead of gathers). I fell in love with the bodice of Simplicity 1610 but I wanted hidden pockets so I used the skirt from Simplicity 1159. At first I tried the gathers, but they were not that flattering on me, so I free styled some pleats.
I absolutely love the final product. This dress is a blank canvas and can be dressed up or dressed down.
Short Waist – I have a short waist so I removed 1 inch from the bodice. Because of this adjustment I should have added an additional inch to the skirt, but I didn’t realize it until I had already cut out the skirt. I ended up putting in a very narrow hem on the bottom to compensate the lost inch.
I also cut the skirt front on the fold instead of cutting two separate pieces per the written instructions.
As mentioned earlier, I added pleats instead of gathers. The pleats were more flattering to my thicker midsection.
- To add a little more drama and fullness to the skirt, I added an easy self-made tulle petticoat . I also wore flats so that the skirt would graze the floor.
- I layered two black/silver Statement necklaces and threw on a pair of matching earrings.
- As a topper I wore a black & gray tartan short over coat. (not shown)