Does it feel like I start every blog post with some comment on how delayed the garment, or the post, or both are? Well, same story today on multiple levels! Let’s start at the beginning…
I purchased this dress in the Blackbird Fabrics Boxing Day sale back in 2018. I immediately envisioned it being sewn up for New Year’s Eve, and at the time, had a 2-piece set in mind. I had recently been gifted the How to Do Fashion “No. 8 Svaneke” pattern, which has a very cute slightly cropped, short sleeve top and big pleated skirt as an option, and I figured this would ultimately turn into that!
As December 2019 hit and NYE started getting closer and closer on mycalendar, my sewing time was limited and I was much more motivated to take on simple projects that felt manageable, namely knits and quick tops. A 2 piece jacquard set felt out of my reach in a way it hadn’t in the past, and I decided I’d tackle it another time. Then, Hannah Corey of @HannahMCorey debuted her New Year’s Eve 2019 outfit… Almost a duplicate of what I’d had in mind, in a different colorway of this same fabric! Y’all can see her perfect version here – proof that the original 2 piece idea was a fabulous match for this fabric!
I was so excited to see Hannah’s version, and while more excited than ever to sew up this beautiful fabric, I remained a little intimidated by it (and more than a little busy!). Of course, the next New Year’s Eve (2020, ew) was an uneventful one that simply didn’t feel like it warranted such a beautiful fabric, so once again, I gave myself a reason not to make the dress.
FINALLY, 2021 came around. We were at a point that we were beginning to feel comfortable attending weddings, and had a couple on our calendar. I was still very early postpartum and wanted to make myself something to wear that would make me feel pretty, and I decided hey – what better time to finally cut into that beautiful jacquard? So I did it. The 2-piece set was still on my brain, but I also had two dress patterns that I thought would suit the fabric well. I have the HARDEST time making decisions (fun fact – I sometimes tell my husband that the whole reason I had kids was so that I could ask them to make my decisions for me. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made my daughter make the final decision when I narrow it down to two things on a menu!!) – so in typical me fashion, I took to Instagram stories and let someone else decide for me! The votes were OVERWHELMINGLY for the Flora Dress, so here we are!
This was, surprisingly, an actual pleasure to sew. Though I had kind of blown up the jacquard in my mind to be some daunting substrate, it behaved so well. I used a stormy grey rayon bemberg for the bodice lining, and substituted the straps for pink satin ribbons. I was so proud of this dress as I sewed it – this felt like the most professional piece I’ve sewn to date, and sometimes I would look over and think “no way, I made that?!” I’m still totally in love with it.
My only wish is that I’d extended the length of the skirt! The fabric and color palette feel upscale and luxurious, and I knew that I wanted the high-low skirt option so that the beautiful “wrong” side of the jacquard’s weave was slightly visible. However, I think that this shape would have been even better with an extra six inches on both the front and back length. The short length of the front feels a little more “playful little girl” than “elegant woman”.
Related blooper? The wedding that we attended was out of town, and we arrived late in the morning the day of the wedding. It was not until we were getting dressed in the hotel room that I recognized that the invitation indicated a BLACK TIE dress code. My husband hadn’t brought a tie, and my dress was not the correct length! Luckily, a friend of ours had an extra tie that was wildly similar to the print of my dress, but there was nothing to be done about the length of the dress. Whoops.
Length aside, I’m still crazy about this dress. I actually think I may move it out of the closet to permanent residence in the sewing room, so that I can dress up my mannequin when she’s not in use, and admire this dress as often as possible! I’m also dying to wear it again, so if you’re getting married or having a fancy event soon, hit me up. Any excuse, I’ll take it!
So that concludes yet another Pins & Pinot classically delayed blog post. Fabric purchased in 2018. Dress completed in October 2021. Photos taken at a wedding attended in November 2021. Photos edited in May 2022…. Blog post published October 2022.
Thanks for reading my thoughts on this pattern! Both the fabric and pattern used to create the dress were purchased by me. All words and opinions expressed throughout this post are my own, as always. Links provided throughout this post may be affiliate links – if you choose to purchase any products through these links, I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you. This simply helps me justify the costs of my sewing habit and the time it takes to share it with you!! Happy Sewing!
- XX Elizabeth