Ginger Made: Ma Deuxième Belladone!

Oooh la la!  Une autre Deer & Doe Belladone!  I’m really, really excited about this dress– I’ve only worn it once, and I can already tell that it’s going to be one of my favorites!

I bought this cotton ikat last May at B & J Fabrics and hoarded it like a miser, waiting for the perfect pattern.  It was quite expensive, so I knew I really needed to use it wisely.  I was so nervous to cut into it!  After I made my first Belladone dress, I realized that my precious ikat would work really well with the pattern!  They’re basically besties for life.

I really like this fabric.  I thought that it would be scratchy, but it’s actually really soft.  It’s a nice medium weight, so it’s got a little heft, but it’s also drapey.  I would sew with this all day every day if I could!

Like the last time I made this dress, I was really careful when I handled the back bodice pieces to make sure that I didn’t stretch out the bias-cut edges.  I stabilized the edges with rayon seam binding before I topstitched them down.

I originally planned to do a full lining, but I had a hard time wrapping my head around that with the unusual back construction.  The dress was pretty heavy without the lining, and since it’s more of a summer dress, I decided to skip it and just line the skirt with rayon bemberg.  I wanted to keep things as tidy as possible, so I added a bemberg waistband to hide the seams at the waist.  I also hand stitched seam binding onto the zipper tape and over the raw edges of the center back seam to enclose them.

I was really careful to match up the the seams in the back.  It’s not hard to do, but it takes a little time.  Tasia has a great tutorial for a foolproof way to match patterns here.

I really love this pattern.  It’s so flattering and so fun!  The back cutout is super-duper cute, and I just love the shape of the skirt.  It’s the perfect everyday dress– you could wear it shopping, to the movies, to work, to church, to brunch, for drinks after work, really, just about anywhere.  I’m pretty light on versatile dresses like that in my wardrobe, so this is a welcome addition.

Now you tell me– what’s YOUR ideal everyday dress?  Something that works from day into night?  Long?  Short?  Spill the beans!

229 responses

  1. Such a pretty dress. That fabric is ace on you. Love the back detail and very impressed with your finish inside. It feels such a treat to wear a garment that is as beautiful on the inside as it is out. Excellent work 🙂

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    • Thank you, Kirsty! It’s so worth it to slow down and take the time to finish things. I have a few dresses I made when I started out a few years ago that probably won’t last much longer because my seam finishing skills weren’t very good. It’s a shame to work really hard sewing something and have it fall apart after you’ve worn it a couple of times!

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  2. Oooh, very pretty! I remember spotting this fabric in your stash revel interview – nice to see what it’s like all made up. 🙂

    I really need to get this pattern. The back detail makes me fall in love with it every time I see it….

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    • Yep, it’s been hanging around for a while! I finally knuckled down and sewed it because I didn’t want to have it hanging around in my stash until NEXT summer!

      This really is a sweet pattern– I really think you’d like it!

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    • Thank you! This dress isn’t the easiest one to finish neatly– I’m not in love with the finish on my first version of this dress, so I sort of haphazardly covered things up as best I could on this one!

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    • Hi, Catherine! I stabilized it by sewing rayon seam binding into the seam (after pressing the seams under, I slid the binding into the crease so it would be caught in the seam). You could use bias tape, but it will stretch a bit, so I prefer to use something like seam binding, twill tape, or ribbon that won’t stretch out.

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