Thursday, May 26, 2016

New dresses!

When going through my wardrobe in the #konMari process, I realised I wanted more dresses. Today, I present three new additions to my closet!

The first two were ones which were living in my mother-in-law's warehouse and I was gifted them when we were cleaning up.

The first is a basic loose shape (so it is helped by a belt) but I find the pattern charming and the fabric is comfortable. Incredibly easy to wear. I've dressed it up here with a lovely frangipani head piece made by my talented sister of Tanith Rowan Designs.

Free is the best price.
The second is this striking metallic dress. It is sadly a little bit scratchy around the neck and sleeve hems but I'm willing to put up with that for the awesome retro vibe. I have not worn this out yet and am still pondering how best to style it.
I try not to laugh as the toddler creates behind the scenes havoc
The third dress joining my wardrobe is one I've made myself.  It is my first try making a garment from stretch fabric, using specialty stitches on the sewing machine. For many years I avoided knits "until I got an overlocker" but lately I've been willing to experiment. I'm very happy that I pushed myself, because the machine did better than I expected and it opens up lots of new options for me.

It is an incredibly basic caftan dress sewn from two rectangles of fabric, as explained in this online tutorial. I used stash burgundy jersey, sewing the seams by machine, but doing the neck, sleeve and bottom hems by hand. Dame Esmerelda helped with that process.
Using my dress form to sew the neckline.
You end up with a straight, shapeless dress (with quite nice drapey short "sleeves"), and I personally wouldn't wear it without a belt.
I also made a long belt of the same fabric from the leftovers.  As a change, I added a cloche and a pansy brooch for a 1920s vibe.

I don't usually take outfit photos for the blog and the little boy was very interested in the process. We have quite a few photographs featuring a short photobomber.
Just like this. 


  1. Three great dresses! I like the twenties styling of the one you made, it really suits you. All great colours and fabrics. And I'd forgotten about that head piece!

    1. I get a lot of good comments whenever I wear that headband.

  2. Aww, what a cute little photobomber. :)

    Great dresses! Three new ones is a serious boon to just about anyone's wardrobe and these style me as styles that will get a lot of wear. Perhaps with #2, that's a bit scratchy, you could but a thin long sleeve top (or even a thermal/long john style shirt) under it to help cut down on that element a bit. I used to do that for some lovely, but rather "pokey" (due to metallic threads) work blouses that I had eons ago.

    Wishing you a fantastic June!
    ♥ Jessica

    1. Thanks Jessica! Yes, three new dresses is a lovely boost. That's a good tip about wearing something under the scratchy dress - not always a comfortable option in Australian heat, but I doubt I'd wear this dress in the height of summer anyway.

  3. Rhiannon, I've been trying to track down an email for you as I would like to discuss you helping on a CF projects. If you could email me at I'd love to explain more.