The impossible dress

My young teenager showed me an image on her phone.image
She begged me to make this dress for her. She’d never seen anything as beautiful in her life and she just had to have it. The model in the image is Marina from Marina and the Diamonds.

Ok. Now I’ve admitted before that I’m a bit of a control freak……especially when it comes to sewing for the girls. So I was quite happy to make this……..but on my terms. A heavy cotton or linen would have been fine. But she had other ideas. It absolutely had to be satin. Hmmmmm………..won’t work, won’t work, won’t work, I thought. But I only thought it. I didn’t say it. This is why.

When it comes to personal style, I know my 13 year old is in a constant battle against her controlling opinionated mother (who has a preference for a classic look) and her well meaning but sometimes (always) overbearing older sister who has a lot to say. So to encourage her to hold firm and trust herself, I try really really really hard not to say anything and not to have a look on my face. And I also try and exercise a bit of humility…………what makes me think I’m always right anyway? So we bought the satin and this is what happened.


You can see from the pattern that this is a very fitted dress. I decided that if we were going to use satin, it would have to be lined to give it some body. I also used quite a firm fusible interfacing. I cut out the dress and put the darts in but actually used the lining to get the fit right.


My daughter is a very slight build but I could tell from the lining that it was going to be too snug……..and too uncomfortable. So I removed the darts from the back.


The lace was quite tricky. We decided to sew white ribbon under the lace to give it a bit more depth. Of course I had to apply the lace to the front before I constructed the dress. And actually, it was quite difficult to get the placement right.




When I was getting very close to the end I did a stupid thing and put the zipper in before I attached the lining……and it was a perfect job! But of course, the back had to be in 2 pieces to turn the dress through. So I had to unpick a perfect zipper and put another in.

Anyway, I finished it finally and I only have one thing to say….



Thank goodness I kept my mouth shut…….it did work!


3 thoughts on “The impossible dress

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