When I came across Wren and Ivory's Reese dress, I was in love! I'd been wanting a maxi dress or two for fall -- in fact, I purchased a Mother Bee maxi dress from Amazon a few months ago (while it's advertised as maternity it works as a "regular" dress, too). I am trying to purchase as little new clothing as possible because I am troubled by the ethics of most ready-to-wear garments, but happily both Mother Bee and Wren and Ivory make their clothes in the USA. Still, I knew I could make a dress for about half the cost of the Reese dress (and I wanted a higher neckline, anyway), so I decided to give it a go.
I picked up some wine-colored brushed polyester jersey, and set to work with great trepidation -- I drafted the pattern myself based on measurements from my Mother Bee maxi dress (a bit challenging, as it's a wrap-front dress). I was truly amazed by how well it went together. I had to make very few adjustments, and the whole process of pattern drafting, cutting, and construction took about a day. Admittedly, I had more time for sewing that day than I usually do...
This dress is incredibly comfortable to wear, and feels so feminine. My husband has dubbed it my "medieval" dress, probably because of the sleeves! I didn't vary much from my inspiration dress, though I did add ties to the back (I like being able to customize the fit) and changed the neckline construction to make it easier to sew. I think I raised the neckline a tad too high, but at least I won't be worrying about wardrobe malfunctions.
I'm a bit torn, because I feel like I've betrayed my love for natural fibers (linen is easily my favorite fiber for fabric, and wool for knits) -- but I must say, the brushed poly is dreamy, easy to care for, and feels like I'm wearing pajamas! Maybe I'll try a rayon or bamboo jersey in future.
It was lovely to sew something for myself, as I've been mostly knitting and my sewing has been limited to very practical things (such as mending) lately. It's giving me all of the cozy Fall vibes, too! I hope you're enjoying a taste of this lovely season in your corner of the globe.