Shifting to the 1960s

are should I say a flash from the past. That's that what I'm seeing in the stores this year. The stores are bringing sexy back in a mature, working girl, dinner party type of way with the Shift dress.

It's said that one of the easiest silhouettes to wear is the shift dress, which is easy to wear and go from office, after-hours to weekend by just pairing it with the right accessories. We also know that Lily Pulitzer came on the scene and showed everyone what really made the shift dress stand out in a crowd by incorporating bold and colorful eye-catching prints.

Quick look at a few styles:

Yves Saint Laurent Shift Dress

Embroidered Eyelet Shift Dress

Leslie Hornby aka Twiggy

DVF Shift Shirt Dress

Jackie Kennedy

Lily Pulitzer

Since my b-day is approaching, I wanted to make a classic shift dress for my special day and pegged New Look 6779 for it. I'd purchased the burgundy cotton sateen some time ago and knew I wanted it for this project , but held off cutting it b/c I wanted a contrasting yoke and finally came across this lovely bold floral fabric.

Right now its in baste stitch mode, and need to tweak it. For starters, I need to recut the yoke, I wanted the print more centered. Secondly, I have gaposis at the upper back and thinking it may be due to cutting the back on the fold. So I need to figure out how to tweak it to get rid of the gaposis in the back and at the same time keep fullness from the hip down. The dress has darts and wondering, could I tweak them to help with the back. Lastly, contemplating carrying the contrasting fabric at the hem of the dress, which will be shortened to just at the knee.
Here it is in its baste stitched state.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.


Anonymous said…
Wow that is going to look lovely!!

I can't help with any of the fit fixes because I stink at that, but I definitely think having the contrast hem would be a nice touch. I would keep your eye contained within the dress and allow the shoes to have their own place in the sun.
I went and pulled my pattern out and there was one thing I had never noticed before...there is no back seam and no zipper in this dress. That is probably your first problem. A back seam would give you an opportunity to make the dress fit a little closer to the body.

Second, if you unbaste it and add a center back seam you may lose some of the gaping in the back.

Third, IMHO I would add a band of the yoke fabric at the would give it a more finished look.

Hope this helps...
Adrienne said…
Those colors look great together! I have no clue about fixing it though. I don't ever have to do it.

Good luck with it!
toya said…
From my experience, you would definitely have to make a CBS, maybe using the extra fabric from the back zip will reduce the gaping, if is it good at the waist and hip, you may have to get really creative and cut the excess off at an angle or even but darts on either side. This sound like my type of project, lol
the contracting band will look great, I plan to do something like than on a sheath style dress I want to make in a few weeks
I hope it works out for you!
Pajnstl said…
I cant help with your problems.. but your contrast fabric is HOTT!
Sheila said…
Thanks all. So far I've managed to remove all the baste stitching and have done a CBS. I'm now in the process of recutting the yoke to achieve more of a centered look. Also, I have enough of the yoke fabric to cut a contrasting band for the hem of the dress. So wish me
Lashell said…
I can't wait to see the finshed garment. Those colors are beautiful together. I'm in a sheath mood too thanks to Erica B. lololol
Robin said…
I love that fabric! I hadn't paid much attention to that NL pattern because I didn't think the shift would work for me, but now I may have to rethink that.
Deb-VA said…
Love your fabric choices - this is definitely my style. Gotta put the DVF version on my wish list.
NikkiJ said…
Sigh. My butt has always been too big for the shift dress. Even when I was 125 lbs it looked odd on me. Your's is coming out beatifully.
Lesalicious said…
I wouldn't know how to help. I am still learning myself. But, love the fabric/colors great job. Cant wait until you finish. I know it will turn out great.:)