craft, Dresses
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A New Gown for a New Year

Earlier this month my husband & I drove up to Toronto to go to Toronto Malanka. Toronto Malanka is a ball to celebrate Ukrainian New Years Eve, (or new years eve by the old calendar). The dress code is black tie & so I had to find a gown to wear.

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With all the craziness in the lead up to Christmas I didn’t have time to make a new gown from scratch, instead I decided modify something I’d made previously. I don’t have many evening gowns but I do have a heap of cocktail dresses that I’ve made over the years & a lot of left over fabric (one of the benefits of buying fabric just because you love it & without any real plans for it).

I took a dress that I loved, which had a separate skirt & bodice, unpicked the skirt & used the leftover fabric to make a new floor length skirt. Don’t worry I didn’t waste the original skirt – I sewed it onto a waistband so I could wear it again.

The new skirt was remarkably simple to make. I started with a base underskirt which was a short hair canvas pencil skirt with a silk organza overlay. For the silk brocade overlay I had a single piece of fabric that was 1.5mx1.5m. To make the skirt I folded the fabric in half, sewed the selvedges together & and one of the cut ends together leaving a small opening for a waistline on the bias (the folded triangle in the picture below is the location of the waistline.

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Once this was done I attached the waistline of the brocade skirt to the underskirt to stabilize the waistband. Then all I had to do was add some clasps to close the skirt & hand stitch the folds in place. All in all it took me a few hours over the weekend & another couple of hours hand stitching after work.

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GownConstruction Detail

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I don’t have much more to say, other than I love this dress.

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