I finished my Mad Men Challenge 2 dress last weekend but didn’t get around to taking photos until later in the week. Above is the inspiration picture and the finished dress. I used the Elisalex Dress pattern from By Hand London. I’m so happy with how it turned out. It fits like a glove and will be perfect for the wedding I made it for in the summer. The Mad Men Challenge 2 hosted by Julia Bobbin was supposed to finsih on the 19th but she has extended it to the 25th of April to give people the weekend to catch up. The parade will be on the 5th of May. I can’t wait to see what everyone else has made!
As you can tell in the photo below, I’m a happy camper in this dress. The fabric feels wonderfully soft against the body and it’s so floaty! I don’t want to take it off when I have it on. Even though the pattern calls for a heavy weight fabric there are ways to get around that which I talk about later.
The length of the dress is a little longer than I would normally go for. I usually favour a knee length dress or slightly above. However, for this dress I decided that it would be more appropriate to just turn it up about 2 inches. I’m tall but I found I didn’t have to add length to the skirt. I did have to make some alterations to the bodice. I lengthened it by about 2 inches to be sure I would be comfortable and that it would sit at my waist. The muslin I made finished so short that it looked ridiculous!
I changed the pattern so that it would have an invisible zipper instead of the large 30″ visible zipper down the whole back of the dress. I felt that with the light, thin fabric I used it would be a better match. To add the invisible zipper I added approximately an inch to the center back of the pattern. Then when the pattern called for inserting the zipper the whole way down the dress, I instead inserted my invisible zipper and then stitched the center back seam down to the end of the dress. I think it looks pretty good and wasn’t a difficult alteration. I also created a full lining for the dress since my fabric was sheer.
It’s definitely pretty bootylicious from the back! Initially I wasn’t sure whether the pouffy tulip skirt would suit my shape. I am larger in the hips and thought it might emphasize that too much. In reality it shows off my waist and gives me a nice shape. I really feel great in it! Thanks By Hand London girls!
While it wasn’t as much of an effort as my Sew Retro Bombshell Dress which had various couture elements, it was a little bit more effort than usual. Since my fabric was very sheer I had to add a full lining to it. The pattern called for a heavy weight fabric and mine was lightweight. I underlined my fashion fabric with silk organza to give it the required body and then created a full lining in white cotton. It turned out pretty great but it certainly was time consuming hand basting all that silk organza to the slippery fashion fabric!
I love having this fabulous dress hanging in my wardrobe now! Hopefully I can find places to wear it once the weather gets better. It’s a little too dressy for work Maybe Mike and I can go for a fancy dinner!
I love just looking at this dress in my wardrobe. Do any of you do that too? It just looks so lovely and I’m very proud of it!
AboutHello and welcome to Mabel Makes!
I'm Stephanie and I live in Dublin, Ireland. I love sewing, knitting and generally being creative. I'm on a mission to create my own handmade wardrobe. I will be sharing my projects and inspirations so stick around for handmade fashion, DIY and tutorials.