This spring we came across an online sale, and two polka dot fabrics just begged to be purchased. ;-) I was a bit wary about having 2 fabrics so similar at the same time, and thus agonizing ensued in which I attempted to make two 1950s polka dotted dresses that were different in every aspect. Neckline, skirt fullness, closure, sleeves, trim- I was even concerned about making the darts different on each dress.
Once I woke up and realized how much of an obsessive freak I was being, I just made the dresses how I felt like doing them. ;-) They ended up being rather different in many of the ways I was initially aiming for (including darts! does that mean I'm still obsessive??) AND I actually made both the dresses in the appointed season AND I love both of them- so the whole experience was a rousing success!
The first dress was this navy polka dot. I was aiming for a more late 40s/early 50s aesthetic- I'm not sure I totally succeeded (different accessories might help more), but I'm still pleased with the result.
I decided on a boat neck that would work well with most of my necklaces, and an edging of ric rac seemed like the natural choice. ;-)
I made the skirt less full than my typical 1950s styles, and added pleats to the center back. I didn't think about the sash covering up that aspect in the pictures... oh well!
Slash pockets are highlighted with a self-fabric facing and ric rac.
I'm not normally a "blue" person, but a navy dress seemed like a great neutral for all the uniquely-colored bead necklaces I've been collecting! I really shouldn't be surprised, but it has been so hard for me to think outside of the box when it comes to accessorizing this dress! Most of my clothes have their own designated hat, necklace, belt, and maybe bracelets that match, so there isn't any thinking involved in the dressing process and there's rarely accessory overlap between outfits.
These yellow accessories kind of felt like cheating anyway, since they are stolen from my lemon dress! Someday I'd like to become comfortable with accessorizing more. ;-)
OK, unrelated to the dress.... but I just love it when I have good hair days. :-) And I really love it when those coincide with our photoshoots!
Oh, and since I mentioned them, the darts on this dress are horizontal, coming from the side seam. ;-) I really wanted to do that on another dress after liking my silk dress last summer, so this was the opportunity!
I tried using several different patterns for this bodice but nothing was cooperating, so I just made my own. The skirt was made using Butterick 5920 (same as the BBQ dress), except turned around so the fullness was in the back and pleating the excess at the center back instead of gathering.
OK, and another reason I chose navy fabric.... was so that I'd have a dress to go with my darling navy gingham sandals. ;-)
· As always, photography by Kathryn! ·