The Gold One-Shouldered Gown

The Gold One-Shouldered Gown

After having done the blue evening gown, I wanted to try adding in more couture techniques that would make the dresses fit better and wear better. I picked this pattern (Simplicity 1874) because I like the back, and because I liked the paneling on the front; I find the simple fronts of simpler gowns to be boring, and I am, after all, interested in learning new techniques.  The dress is made from silk shantung in a light gold; it is partially lined with a beautiful cream colored taffeta.  The dress features a very fitted bodice, with the front made from 9 panels; they are sewn together into a top bodice portion, and then a lower bodice portion, with the panels going in one diagonal direction for the top, and the opposite on the bottom. It's a very clever design, because the fitting for the bust is built in at the panel seams; there are no darts or princess seams on this dress. The closure is a side set invisible zipper, and there is a long slit on one side of the front of the skirt.

This is my first invisible zipper; I didn't even know I had an invisible zipper foot. Luckily, my fancy Pfaff came with one, unbeknownst to me. I swear, most of the feet look alike to me. One day, I'm going to find the instruction manual and find out what some of those feet are for! The back of the gown has two side panels, connected with straps. The straps are interlined with interfacing for stability. I also interlined the side panels, because they had a tendency to pull and wrinkle without them. I also ended up adding boning on the side and back seams, as well as in a few places at the bust, to help the dress maintain it's structure.

Obviously, there isn't a way to wear a bra under this gown, and so I also inserted bra cups on the inside of the lining, and made sure the dress was fitted exactly to my measurements.

Even with the careful fittings and adjustments, I am still not confident that the side without the strap will stay put, and so I added an elastic stay tape along the neckline, and eased it into the seam line. I also inserted boning at the center chest, and to stabilize the neckline closer to the underarm area. I would still not go dancing in this thing, I am sure there would be a wardrobe malfunction at some point!

It took many, many fitting adjustments to get the neckline to be in the correct place while avoiding bunching or pulling of the straps in the back. And every single adjustment had an effect on a different area of the gown, and so while the bodice went together in one night, it was another two days to get the fitting to an acceptable level.  I am overall happy with this dress, given that this is so not my style.  I do like the way the fit worked out, and I am pleased with the workmanship on it, particularly the seam finishes and the boning and stabilizing.  I am, after this dress, more interested than ever in couture techniques; particularly built-in foundation garments, such as corselettes.  I am currently working on a Vogue evening gown that features a built in corselette, albeit not using the same methods that I am really wanting to try, and so I am debating on continuing to follow the pattern, or to branch out and start implementing my newly learned techniques.  The nice thing about these projects is that whether I follow directions or go with what I know works, and whether or not I am completely satisfied with the end product, I always learn from every single project, and that education is priceless.


Absolutely Stunning!!!
Thank you, Lori! : )
Kim (required n...
Oh, Hot Damn, that looks incredible!!! ...and you know how much I hate the color "gold," so this is really something!!!! ;)
You have so much more patience than I do. You are also blogging a lot more, it seems. DO YOU EVER SLEEP?
Thank you, Kim! The color isn't really my first choice either, but I like to use different colors for different dresses just for a change of pace, otherwise things get boring. : ) DM, I really am not a patient person, it's a learned skill. I used to give up on projects if they weren't coming out right; now I know that if I persevere, it WILL eventually work out. So I think I have perseverance more than patience! And yes, I sleep, just probably not as much as others might like to sleep, lol! And don't be impressed by the food blogs, they don't take much time to write. The words are ready and waiting to fall out of my head! ; )

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