March 18, 2013

That 70's Upholstery Dress

I absolutely fell in love with this print the first time I saw it in Jo-Ann's. Yes, I am one of those guilty seamstresses who makes dresses out of quilting cotton. But it's just so pretty!!! (Actually I think it looks like upholstery fabric from the 70s but I adore it nonetheless.)

The finished product is inspired by the 'Luck Be a Lady' dress from ModCloth,

a blue flared belted dress I found on Polyvore

 and the 'Take Action' dress from Anthropologie . It has a scooped neckline, front neckline tucks, half-circle skirt and zips up the back.

I drafted the dress pattern up from scratch. First I draped a dress bodice on Marie Antoinette and transferred it to paper. Then I used this extremely helpful tutorial to swing the waist darts up to the neckline. That way I have neckline tucks instead of waist tucks. (And circle skirts are easy to draft; there are ten million tutorials for them on the internet.)

I tried my best to use professional finishing techniques and I think this dress turned out pretty well. The bodice is fully lined and topstitched around the neck and armholes, which are finished with self-bias binding. There are two pockets in the skirt and a hem facing as well. And what would a newly finished dress be without a matching belt? I used Casey's beltmaking tutorial and it turned out beautifully, and was so much fun to make! Both the buckle and belting are vintage, from the stash.

I still can't decide if I like the red belt better though!


  1. Super cute and PRETTY! I don't think the fabric looks like quilting cotton at all. Great job! I love both belts :D

  2. Thanks Beth <3 Although you haven't made my belt dilemma any easier ;D

  3. I love the dress of course! Its super vintagey and so perfect for spring. I hope it gets here soon! We are supposed to get snow tonight. :0
    I like the red belt better actually, although the other is also nice. I think the red is a welcome pop of color.


  4. Oh and I almost forgot to say you look so pretty in these pictures! I love the way whoever took the pictures captured your beautiful smile. :)

  5. Thank you so much Becca! <3 Audrey took the pictures. She wants to become a photographer :) Still can't decide on the belts tho! haha.