Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Smithson 2014: Why, yes, I have completely lost my mind.

"Wait", you may be thinking, "Didn't you just do a Smithson gown a few months ago?" Yes indeed, I did. Last year's Gala was in September. This year they decided to have it in May, on the 31st, to be exact. And yes, that is just a little over two weeks away. Lately it seems like inspiration for the gown is coming later and later, which can mean challenges for getting it all done in time.

This year I was just not feeling any inspiration at all. The last three years' gowns were so much fun to make, and this year I was just struck with an overwhelming feeling of "Now what?" Sure, I could have used the same pattern as a previous year, but in a different fabric. But heck, what's the challenge in that?

I started planning a quick fabric-shopping trip to New York for the end of this week, to find the Perfect Fabric that would just leap out and inject the dress design into my head, fully formed. Hey, it's worked before! But this morning I looked at the weather report and saw that Friday was going to be a day of unending heavy rain -- not the kind of weather conducive for a day on the road, not to mention schlepping in and out of fabric stores. So I reluctantly called off the trip. But then one of my ASG friends reminded me of a closer option that I always seem to forget about: A Fabric Place, on the outskirts of Baltimore.

Today my daughter personal fashion consultant and I headed there to see what we could find. And after more than half an hour looking through the fabrics (and seriously considering a lovely lace, until I saw that it was Dior and carried a $198/yard price tag -- eek!), I spotted one that whispered "look at me!"
Well, okay, it didn't whisper -- it shrieked. With great trepidation I pulled some off the bolt and we draped it to see how it would work. And that's all it took.

Those of you who have seen my dresses know that I tend to be mostly -- well, "conservative" is the closest I can come up with. So you may be totally shocked to see the fabric I picked.


Yes, my friends, that is indeed an overall sequin fabric. It is an iridescent green/blue, very much peacock tones. It drapes beautifully and does amazing things for my figure. Honest! And I feel so fabulous when it's wrapped around me!
The style isn't nailed down yet, but I know that it needs to be minimally seamed/darted, and I've got to reinforce the heck out of the shoulder seam because the fabric is quite heavy. Suggestions are welcome!
I've got 4 yards of it, and that ought to be plenty for a simple gown. I'd love to have some kind of short train, and a draped back... perhaps reminiscent of my Constellation gown?

So, what do you think? Subtle it ain't!!


  1. Mama Mia, that fabric is totally and completey fabulous. I can not wait to see what you make with it. Maybe the fabric gathered on one shoulder with wonderful flowing diagonal lines across the upper body, to a fitted waist line, and a soft gentle fabric flow over your hips to the floor? The color will be wonderful on you.

    I can not wait for the next update. Hugs, Diane

  2. I think it will be stunning! Still have the pattern for the constellation dress? If so, and it fits just use it. To the average person it will no look like the same dress! The constellation dress looked quite nice on you.

  3. that is wonderful! I look forward to seeing what magic you do with it.

  4. I can't wait to see the resulting garment! I say go all out glam for the event!

  5. I think you should stick with that back, it looks fabulous! You could keep the front plain or do a peekaboo slit across from armscye to armscye.

  6. I LOVE it! Can't wait to see the gown - but want to hear all abouthte process. :)

  7. Fabulous fabric! If I ever had an occasion to wear it, I'd be getting me some of that. And I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one whose daughter serves as a personal fashion consultant.


I would love to hear your thoughts... Please share!