The last big project from the Spring Carnival was a "racey" little red number, courtesy of Stella MacCartney.
Again, the client had found a pic she loved and wanted me to do a similar job for her Oaks Day dress.
But, as my Client is not 20- something and under-eating, we made the skirt longer.
I chose stretch cotton sateen, from Clegs, as the bone-coloured base of the dress because I wanted stability and enough substance in the weave to be flattering.
We chose to bone the bodice and I also added bone-colured orgnaza straps which could convert to a halter-neck if my Client wanted to wear it out "to a barbeque", as she put it. Without the sheer blouse over the top. She hosts some pretty special barbeques I believe...
It was all lined with beige silk habutae.
Anyway, I got red polyester lace from Clegs and red silk organza from Tessuti; the only place I could find that stocked red - outrageous!
I draped the lace onto the dress base, as it was the most effective (and, dare I say it) enjoyable way of creating the right look.
I hand-sewed long vertical darts around the bodice to shape the lace, and then cut and pieced the neckline to create the scolloped look of the original dress.
I added a silk organza hem about 10cm wide to soften the look of the hem.
I toiled the blouse that goes over the top in a design that reflected the original picture, but found it lacking- too Jetsons, not chic enough.
So I drafted the peplum again and used a half circle to create the volume and silhouette that was more flattering and exciting. I made the back slightly longer, for a more elegant line around the body.
We added a belt with a vintage gold buckle, to make it more age-appropriate, and break up the blocks of red a bit, giving the eye something to focus on.
I bound the edged of the blouse with self bias strips, and put an invisible zipper and a little keyhole and button a-top the centre back closure.
I was really happy with the silhouette in the end and enjoyed working with the lace in such a restrained way.
Then it was time to sleep.