Fancy schmancy satin brocade dress

I've told you how I love Simplicity 2444 before.  Several times, trust me--I even created a tag for it!  Haha!

The other day I got inspired to use up some of my fabric cuts that have been on the shelf too long.  I had a poly brocade from JoAnn (you know the ones--they come in all those bright colors and prints, lots of fun but all verrrrry polyester-ey) that I had bought experimentally a while back.  I only had a yard, and just bought it to see what it was like.  But I figured, how about a sort of 60's-inspired cocktail dress?

But yes, I only had a yard.  But, I'm a thrifty cutter.  Here it is with Simplicity 2444 with the modified scoop neckline that I gave it!

I also gave it a V in the back, just for fun!

So, it did work out to make it with only a yard, but the skirt's pretty short.  Maybe shorter than I would have ideally made it.  But all in all, it turned out well!  This fabric sheds like crazy--little silvery threads everywhere!--and the grain was NOT straight at all.  I think I wasted some fabric trying to straighten it out before I cut it, but then had to give up and just use it slightly crooked.  Just the way it was woven!

It's very bouncy, really, but it worked well with the soft poly lining I gave it (the bodice only).  Would have been really annoying with facings at the neck and armholes!

Have you ever used that poly brocade stuff?  What for?

And, any tips for wearing a pale-colored cocktail party dress like this one?  I love that it's not black--might replace an LBD for me once in a while!

20 comments

  1. I used the poly brocade to make my NYE dress last year. It turned out really good but I was worried a first because it was fraying like crazy. I ended up having to line it.

    I just bought that simplicity pattern last week! Its next on my to-do list.

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    1. Cool, it would be great for NYE!

      You'll looove that Simplicity pattern--it is SO versatile!

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  2. Not bad for a yard! My only criticism is the hem- i would face it with a bias cut facing instead. For styling- definitely sky high hill and a boyfriend blazer with a little clutch would work for me. And with your gorgeous locks down, of course!

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    1. Haha, you caught me! The hem is definitely not the best; I was in a hurry and was made at the fabric by that point! I should give it a facing.

      Good styling ideas!

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  3. You're absolutely right: the dress is gorgeous, but the skirt is a little too short. Have you tried it with tights?

    Have a nice day!

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    1. It did turn out short. =( Tights might be too winter-ey or daytime-ey, but I know I'll need to be careful wearing it!

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  4. really cute dress - although I usually run away from poly myself!

    this looks like a pretty versatile dress. a little tuxedo jacket in black or even a bright rasberry color could work.
    The nckline definitely calls for a statement necklace but in that case I,d keep the accessories to that.
    I think you could even wear it as a top with a maxi and a cardigan...

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    1. Tuxedo jacket--inspired idea! And statement necklace, good call! Loooove your styling tips!

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  5. My father bought a condo as a second/vacation home a few years back. As he is a bachelor in his 60's, he opted to go with an "Asian decor theme." As a result I went through a period of working with those brocades A LOT. The worst was making paper-pieced hexagons for a large floor cushion cover. As you said, threads EVERYWHERE! I have yet to make apparel out of it, though I would love a little jacket made from a black-based pattern.

    I, too vote for a tuxedo jacket to go over, but be aware of the length; you don't want to end up looking like there's no dress underneath from behind! Definitely sport a high high heel, but make sure it has some structure to it. Maybe go for a kinda stacked heel (ie Rocha by Nine West), and consider a nude tone. Not only will this pair with the short length to make your legs appear 6 feet long, but will help avoid a slutty vibe (which a smaller, brighter heel could add). On NYE I wore a light-toned very short sleeveless dress, and opted for a chunky-ish heeled mary jane. Totally balanced it out. Of course I also wore a silver sequined jacket, so I still may have passed for a hooker. Oh well.

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    1. Wow, you are dedicated--this fabric is not the easiest, for sure! I'm sure the Asian theme looks great, though!

      Tuxedo jacket is a great idea. I def don't want to look slutty, so balancing the shoes will be necessary! (I'm sure you didn't look like a hooker! ;) )

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  6. Ohhhh! Pretty! This dress would be perfect for the Blogger Cocktail party in April!

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    1. Haha, thanks! I'm still planning what to wear for that, but this is an option! ;)

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  7. So lovely dress, dear! I like it! Congrats for your blog too, it's very pretty! I'm your newest follower and I wanted to invite you to follow me back. I hope you will! XOXO
    -Ladyfairy

    http://www.ladyfairy-scloset.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thanks, and welcome! You have some great dress inspiration on your blog!

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  8. I've used it for plush animals...for a while I thought they were prettynifty and hoped they sell on Etsy. Here's one of three I made two years ago...
    http://silverrosesewing.blogspot.com/2010/09/laughing-cherry-blossom-bear.html

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  9. I used it to make clutch purses for my sister-in-law's bridesmaids. They were a beautiful yellow to match her colours (navy and yellow). I hated working with it because of the fraying, too!! As soon as you cut the silly stuff it starts fraying immediately!! But soooooo pretty :)

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. I hope this link works!! (And it really wasn't that lopsided before it was stuffed with their things!)

      http://careandj.ca/images/phocagallery/wedding_photos/thumbs/phoca_thumb_l_110507_caroline_stevens_wed-1281.jpg

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    3. OMG, that purse is beautiful!!!! I can see how this fabric would be great for purses--still frays, but there's way less of it per item!!

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