Picnic dress!

Oooooh, I'm excited about this one.  My new fave dress!  Now I'm totally ready for an early summer picnic.

You'll get the vibe immediately when I show it to you, but... we're channeling Zooey Deschanel, New Girl, ModCloth...

I don't know if that selection of pics conveys my meaning right.  It's an early 60's retro feel that's totally wearable for every day if you decide it should be-- wear it with flats, maybe?  I am SO excited to wear this this summer.

It all started with a sale at JoAnn.  I don't normally impulse-buy fabric, but this was 50% off the regular price of $4.99 a yard.  It's one of the signature JoAnn quilting prints.  Super cheap, some bright, cute colors... I loved this blue and white picnic gingham check print, and just went for it.  The dress cost me less than $4 for a yard and a half!  Normally I never use quilting fabric for clothing because it's too stiff, scratchy, and coarsely woven, but for this it worked out great.  I used a solid white quilting cotton for the lining, and the two went together like a dream.  The whole thing took me only a few hours.

I used Simplicity 2444, of course, for the bodice, and did a regular gathered skirt of two panels for extra fullness and fun.

Ta-da!

I know it's sorta plain, with no trim or anything, but I kinda like it that way.  It's simple and sweet!  And I can dress it up with a cardi or something over it.  And maybe the plainness makes it more wearable for 2012!  Like Zooey has taught us, you can wear a natural-waisted, full-skirted dress with flats and a cross-body bag if you want to be casual!

24 comments

  1. This is cute as hell. And there are so many ways to dress it either up or down!

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  2. I love the first dress on Zooey!! I love yours too, perfect for a picnic too!

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    1. Yes! I bet that first one is silk, more evening-ey, but still a great style inspiration!

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  3. I love it! Can't wait to break out my spring dresses again!

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    1. OMG, me neither! Can't wait for warmer weather!

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  4. I was gonna do the same thing per: http://www.sewweekly.com/2012/02/make-this-look-too-much-fun-dress-in-barbecue-blue/

    I have made Simplicity 2444 twice and it's awesome.

    The only thing I don't like about the whole thing is that I wish I could source a better quality gingham so I can get the look, but not have to work with that yucky poly cotton. I made a skirt out of that material about a month ago and it just doesn't drape right.

    Love your blog!

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    1. Oh, wow, the Sew Weekly had the same idea! Neither of the patterns (2444 or the one they use) is quite the same, but both are cute.

      I didn't use the yucky JoAnn poly cotton for this (I completely know what you mean, it's awful)--it's actually printed onto a quilting fabric. Also JoAnn, got it really cheap. It's their signature brand and comes in a a few colors! Also not great for clothes but better than the poly blend!

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  5. It is absolutely darling! I'm a new reader of your blog, and because of it I want so badly to start sewing again. I'm inspired! Gotta get the timing on my machine fixed, then I'm on my way! Keep up the terrific work!

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    1. Aaw, thank you! So glad it's inspirational. =) Welcome!!

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  6. Love that blue gingham...what a great choice!

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  7. Adorable! I do love 2444...I think I'll have to revisit it with some polka dot fabric I have. I do think that you have so many potential ways to add to the dress if you keep it basic---brooches, cool necklace, cardi, belt, etc... I keep thinking I need to make more basic dresses so I can use all my accessories!

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    1. It would be SO cute in polka dot. I've been searching for the right polka dot fabric.. siiigh... yes, basic dresses can be dressed up in so many ways!

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  8. Ah,Zooey! She's changed all our lives, hasn't she? What a sweet dress, and your rocking it with that ponytail! Love!

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    1. She has!! I love how she wears flats with dresses in New Girl. Thanks for the compliments!

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  9. Adorable! Plain is perfect. That way, you can wear it to a picnic or dress it up for an al fresco dinner!

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  10. It's absolutely adorable!

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  11. I had to giggle reading your post...... I'm a quilter first and a sewer second... and as a quilter, I have to say that most quilters won't use Joann's quilting fabric either... for those that can afford it, we tend to navigate to the higher end quilting cottons. I tend to use a lot of high end quilting cotton left over from quilts for projects and other fun things for my kids - including clothes. Not that I can say I haven't spent my fair share at Joann's... 'cause I sure have. But, I just had to share.

    Love the dress - as a "hippy" girl, I can see wearing these style dresses for my body type and it actually working well / looking good. Pretty sure Adele has worn similar dresses as well. I always love your look / style, but I especially love your projects that I know I can wear being a more... curvacious?... gal. :)

    Thanks for your blog! It is definitely an inspiration!

    Erin

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    1. Thanks for your comment! It is definitely a flattering dress shape. I will have to check out Adele's dresses for inspiration...

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  12. That dress is adorable! I barely ever have any time to make anything for myself, so busy making orders for other people!
    This is definitely on my list of things to make, thank you for the extended inspiration.

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