Thursday, August 23, 2012

Designer inspired Floral Spring Dress

Fabric: Milly cotton voile from Emma One Sock

What better way to celebrate the coming of Spring than with a new floral dress. Although the colours in this dress aren't the best on my skin, I couldn't resist the yellow and blue -  so bright and happy. I also struggle to resist Milly prints. 

I feel like this dress is a step closer to finding the perfect summer dress for me. This may sound like an easy task, but it's not for me. I like something  sleeveless, but with a bit of shoulder coverage. Something very light, but not sheer. Something with a bit of shape, yet not fitted. Something easy to move around it, yet not sack-like. Something with plenty of exposed skin (for ventilation), yet sunsafe and modest. Oh and something made from cotton...but that's a given. 

The inspiration for this dress came predominately from these three sources:

1. This Marc Jacobs cotton voile dress
I borrowed the flutter sleeves and the pleating around the skirt.

I actually used the toile I made to use this dress as the starting point for my new dress. I wanted something with raglan sleeves. I also wanted a dress I could pull in at the hips. I used the neckline of this dress and modified the sleeves.

3. A RTW Jag dress I wore a few years ago on Xmas day.
I borrowed the drawstring idea from this dress. One thing I made sure to do was to reposition the casing on my new dress. I always felt the placement of the drawstring on this JAG dress was unflattering on my body shape. I shifted it much lower, to go over my hips. I also added a second row of casing to provide more support.

- side view - 

 - back view-

three rows of pleats 

front view -  double casing with drawstrings 

 back view - double casing with elastic 
I sewed the elastic down across a section of the back to give the dress some shape.

Due to the sheerness of the fabric I lined the skirt of the dress with rayon lining. I sewed this in place, before sewing on the casing. The casing covers the seam.

I already owned the perfect earrings to go with the dress. Silver flowers with yellow cotton from Polli.

I wore this dress out to brunch this morning and can say with confidence I'm really quite happy with it. It was cool and comfortable which ticks two very big boxes.


  1. Only a step lady, a giant leap. I want one too!

  2. It's just gorgeous and I think you have really nailed a flattering yet comfortable fit. Double drawstring plus elastic at the back - what a great idea! And the bottom pleats and flutter sleeves add just enough detail. I think I will be stealing some ideas from this one :D

  3. What a gorgeous Spring dress. I love the colours! It looks lovely to wear.

  4. Totally gorgeous! Like summer in a dress :)

  5. Just lovely - it does seem to tick all your boxes and it is such a cheerful fabric.

  6. It is so pretty and looks really comfy - It looks like it will be great for your tropical weather. You have really nailed that designer look.

  7. I love the way you've pulled together elements from different dresses to create your perfect summer dress - it looks great on you and the colours are so happy and fresh. Cute earrings too.

  8. What a great dress! I love the fabric. I imagine this dress is going to get lots of wear this summer.

  9. It looks very cool and comfortable! I love the pleats and that pretty summery fabric. Nice one!

  10. It's gorgeous! I love that yellow floral voile. You use the BEST fabrics! I mean that. You have a really good eye for picking out fabrics. I also really love the pleating at the bottom.

  11. So pretty! And looks cool and comfortable.