The Diana Dress

Time for some selfish sewing.

When I saw the tester call for Wardrobe By Me's Diana Dress, I was reminded of a jersey wrap dress sitting in my wardrobe that has a very flattering fit, and is really versatile. So I was keen to have a go at making this one (thinking it would be a pretty tricky sew).

Well I have since learned that the dress style was pioneered by fashion designer (and ex princess) Diane von Fürstenburg, and the style is often referred to as a DVF Wrap Dress (sewing is a very educational pursuit).

I also learnt that I was wrong about it being a tricky sew. I have dubbed this my 'two-night dress'. The second version I cut one night, and sewed up the second. And, might I add, I didn't start till around 8 each night, and was finished by midnight. So I reckon if I managed to get the kids off to bed a little earlier it could definitely be a single night dress (especially now the pattern is taped together and pieces traced).

The pattern has a number of sleeve options - sleeveless, short sleeve (like the one above), elbow length (the grey version), 3/4 sleeve and long sleeve.  The length of the skirt is to fall at your knees, and there are instructions in the pattern on adjusting length for a maxi skirt (it's just gorgeous).

The elbow length version is a great transitional piece. I'm looking forward to Autumn arriving (they say it's on Tuesday), so I'll have more opportunities to take this one out for a spin.

So the first version I made up was in some kind of synthetic jersey that I nabbed from the clearance table at Spotlight when all clearance fabric was marked down to $3 (you should have seen my basket/trolley that day!).  The fabric is not the patterns or colours I would normally wear, but I don't mind stepping outside my colour comfort zone every now and then. I'm happy with the result. Just perfect for a morning watching the local triathlon.  By the end of the day, however, the bodice was a little droopy, and the belt/sash wasn't quite holding it all together as well as it started - the fabric had great drape, but not so great recovery. There was no untoward exposure, just a little bit of a close call.

So the next version I made up I used a double ponte for the neckband and sash/ties.  I love the firmness that the double ponte gives (and it also meant that I could sneak out a dress with only 1.5m of the main fabric - even allowing for a bit of basic pattern matching).  I'm keen to keep exploring the knit fabric aisles (and websites) and experiment with different fabrics.

The pattern is currently on sale at Wardrobe By Me, so make sure you get a copy before it's back to full price.


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