My #2017BestNine grid revealed a couple of things to me – novelty print dresses are still my thing, Dana Willard designs awesome fabric, and the Ice Cream Dress took the cake for the favorite! In fact, 3 of my 9 “best” liked photos of 2017 were of the ice cream dress! Not that I’m surprised. This thing rocks.
I made this dress over the summer, back before I’d started blogging about any of my makes. However, this was the first time I really had a full photo shoot for one of my garments – though I had always enjoyed taking one or two photos for Instagram once I’d completed a garment, I was considering starting up my blog at the time, and knew that I would want this dress on here someday. I had this really fun idea in my head that I’d take the cutest pictures of me eating an ice cream cone in the ice cream dress. Due to an unfortunate mix of ridiculous Texas heat, downtown ice cream shops closing early on Sundays, and gelato being a bit meltier than ice cream, my adorable plan lasted all of 27 seconds. My first blog photo shoot may have been more melty chocolate drips than glitz and glamour, but some good photos were salvaged nevertheless!!
One of my most loved patterns this year was Butterick 6453 by Gertie – in fact, I’ve made 5 different variations of it since my first in late April. I tried both views of the dress, used it as a Halloween costume, and even turned the slimmer view into a fringed suede skirt. Though I really like each version I made, I’d have to say my views align quite well with the likes on my Instagram photos – the Ice Cream Dress is by far my favorite!
I fell in love with this fabric when it was released in 2016. I believe I came across the fabric while fabric shopping online, and then skimmed through the lookbook Art Gallery had put together… and melted. I needed a dress with adorable ice cream cones. After waiting and waiting for it finally to come back in stock after selling out, I bought a few yards of the fabric, and began planning a dress. It took me a full year to finally decide I had enough skill to cut into the fabric – I didn’t dare cut into it without a plan for something I would truly love, and the skill to execute it!
I’d originally planned a dress similar to the off the shoulder number featured in the look book. The large off the shoulder ruffle was quite possibly my favorite look of 2016! Thanks to my strong fear of cutting into beautiful things, my length of fabric was still intact when Gertie announced this pattern, so I shifted my intentions and decided this was the way to go. In true Gertie style, the princess seams of the pattern send off a bit of a sweet but slightly sexy pin-up vibe. The big gathered skirt certainly lends to the sweetness, and I knew it was an awesome silhouette to play up the fun fabric.
Each time I have made the full skirted version of this pattern, I’ve cut all of the bodice and facing pieces as called for. However, I have chosen to forgo the original pattern pieces. Instead, I’ve used the full width of the fabric for the gathered waist and simply cut a front and back rectangle to my desired length. (This modification was primarily done out of necessity due to the fabric being printed directionally in a way that the pattern did not accommodate). I have been quite taken with midi length skirts this year, and cut this one as such. I was afraid it might be a bit much, but in the end, it is JUST right. The finished skirt, from waist to hem, is THIS MANY INCHES. Between the length, the fabric, and these black pumps, I feel like I’ve achieved such an ideal balance between sweet and sassy.
dress: handmade by me
pattern: Butterick 6453 – Patterns by Gertie – View A
fabric: Art Gallery – Boardwalk Delight – I Scream, You Scream Cotton – by Dana Willard
Shoes: Black Suede Pumps from Lulu’s
This may be my last blog post of 2017 – I’ve got a few more garments destined for the blog, but amongst all the real life over the next week I’m just not quite sure they’ll make it to post before 2018 rolls around! I’m so enjoying this space for sharing my makes a little more in depth. If you’re following along with me, there will be a bunch of exciting stuff coming up for 2018. I’ve joined the IndieSew Blogger Team, I’m one of 6 sewing bloggers leading the #SewMyStyle2018 Project, and I have lots of big plans of my own for the upcoming year, as well. Hopefully this leads to a bunch of really stellar me-made garments, and puts me one step closer to a fully handmade wardrobe. Thank you so much to those of you who read and have made my 2017 that much more awesome. I’m looking forward to all that 2018 will bring!
- XX Elizabeth