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Enchanted By Sewing The Podcast

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Inspired by Amy Adams - Creating the Perfect Shirt Dress For Me

Amy's modeling a shirt dress made up in  a paisley silk twill.
 I'm thinking of a nice rayon challis.

I'll also be using a waistline that suits my figure type.
No matter what fabric I make it up in, I'm pretty sure I'm going to need to find a nice grassy bank to pose on, when I get  my next shirt dress done!
Though I'm making plain sewing progress on the simple black denim skirt I talked about in my most recent Enchanted by Sewing audio podcast episode, I have been distracted by the idea of either draping or altering a pattern to create the perfect shirt dress pattern. That garment has been running around in my head since I took my draping class last year. At that time I was working towards creating a shirt dress, but didn't feel quite ready to create all the classic features of that type of dress. I did create a pattern I used for a really pretty linen dress with a front polka dot zipper that I like a lot, but with simpler details.
Amy's dress is more along the lines of the
full-skirted versions. I'm working on one of the
no-sewn/included waistline, to be worn with a wide
self-fabric belt that covers a 3" elastic.
Since I finished creating and producing last month's audio podcast, I'd been working on my skirt and also the muslin, and necessary pattern alterations to an out-of-print McCalls 3623 shirt dress (there are plenty of shirt dresses in current pattern catalog, and unused versions of this pattern are still available through many vendors on the web). Then I opened the Vogue August 2014 issue, turned to the article on redheads (photographed by the great Fran Leibovitz - can that woman take a bad photo?) and found Amy Adams wearing the quintessential paisley, silk twill shirt dress. 

Amy and I don't have the same figure types. She is more of an hour glass type and I'm a rectangle. So though I'm distracted by the idea of her full skirt with gathers, I'm still at work on my straight up and down shirt dress, complemented by a 3" wide elastic based belt.

I'll be creating a first test version of this dress in a pretty piece of rosy-peach linen-look material I picked up from the freebie counter at school. I've been using a black 3" wide elastic belt I already own over my muslin,  to test out the waist and hip style lines that belt will create. Wearing my peaches and cream dress (Of course I've already named it!) will help me make decisions about any changes I might want to make to the pattern, before I use it again.  I've been planning to create a version of this dress in a beautiful length of silk noil/raw silk that it's my fabric inventory. Now I've got plans for a rayon challis as well, inspired by seeing Amy in this dress.

Doesn't finding this article seem like a sign from beyond, that I really needed a well-fitting shirt dress pattern?

Being able to follow through on inspiration like this is one of many things that keeps me...
Enchanted by Sewing!
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In my Enchanted by Sewing audio podcasts, I talk about wardrobe additions I've sewn and how I've sewn them, as well as garments I'm inspired to sew.

Amy Adams wearing a beautiful and sewing-inspirational silk twill shirt dress in Vogue's August issue for this year

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