Thursday, May 30, 2013

Inspiration: Costume College Gala Dress

Thanks to all who voted on my Costume College Gala Dress poll! A lot of you really wanted an inspiration post so that's what you're getting today! Some of you wanted to be surprised and some wanted to see construction posts so I've not decided what to do about that. The surprise people may win out just because I haven't taken any construction pics yet!

Patterns from the 19-teens are hard to find! I decided on this pattern from the Vintage Pattern Lending Library from 1918. Originally, I was going to do exactly this pattern but I changed my mind and I'm just using the skirt part and I'm drafting the bodice that I really want.

with flash

Fabric was a big issue with this whole gala dress project. A lot of early ideas had to be cut because either I couldn't find appropriate fabric or I couldn't afford appropriate fabric. I ended up with these two home dec fabrics (plus the white crepe underneath the sheer).

no flash
They are all polyester but home dec fabric is soooo expensive even at 100% poly! I found these at Hobby Lobby. They seem to have the best prices I can find locally on home dec fabric. These two were in the $10-12 /yd range verses the $30-40 /yd stuff I found at Jo-Ann's.

The theme of this dress is go big or go home and I've decided to add pearls to all of the little fabric poofs. So far I've sewn on about 150 of these glass pearls that were originally destined for my Renaissance dress but never made it and I need to run out and get some more for the sleeves!


  1. Thanks for the reminder about the Vintage Pattern Lending Library, I've also been frustrated by the lack of teens patterns--as well as the difficulty of searching for them, since that era doesn't have as clearly established a name as other eras.

  2. Whoa, this is a total surprise to me! I love your fabrics; very good choice. The pearls with the sheer and the white are going to tie it all in so well. I hope you do at least some construction pics - I would really like to see how this comes together!

  3. Such beautiful dresses. I wish I could sew better.
    I will have to try my hand at simpler things first ; )
    Have a great weekend.

  4. *Swoon* So much Edwardian loveliness, it really does make one's heart and mind sing with happiness.

    ♥ Jessica