Tuesday, December 12, 2017

My Velvet Crush: A Front to Back Maxi Length Wrap Dress

Have you noticed the wonderful velvet garments that are everywhere this season? I have been crushing on them and knew it was time to add a velvet garment to my wardrobe.  As the new Nature's Fabrics brand ambassador, I thought my first project for them was the perfect chance to satisfy my infatuation with this luscious fabric. 

They have many colors and prints of crushed velvet and I was on the fence about which one to choose.

      Peach Flowers on Black Polyester/Spandex Crushed VelvetNavy Polyester/Spandex Crushed VelvetPink Polyester/Spandex Crushed Velvet
      Silver Polyester/Spandex Crushed VelvetPink Flowers on Black Polyester/Spandex Crushed VelvetMist Green Polyester/Spandex Crushed Velvet

In the end, I choose the crushed velvet in Taupe, a perfect compliment to my skin and it reminded me of champagne.

If you have been here before, you know I like simple styles that let the fabric shine. I chose to use Vogue 9251 in view B with the sleeves of view A.
                   Image result for vogue 9251 pattern review
I love the drama of a maxi dress and one that that features side seam pockets is a bonus. 

I was completely taken in by the adorable flutter sleeve.

Because velvet is tricky to sew/hem. I lined the bodice eliminate any unsightly and likely, uneven, stitching lines along the neckline. I used the velvet to line it and under stitched it to prevent it from rolling to the outside. To save myself some trouble next time, I would use a non-slippery lining when paired with velvet.

The wrap on this dress offers complete coverage providing modesty when needed, or not ;p.

Speaking of modesty, hubby was happily distracted by the depth of the neckline on this one. When I was getting his opinion on it, he couldn't focus on anything but how low it goes. I jokingly remarked that I would need to turn the thing around if I wanted to have a serious conversation with him. As it turns out, the dress works that way too! 

The stretch of the velvet allows the front darts to soften when turned to the back. The back darts don't interfere with bust shaping. 

It began as a joke, but I would seriously wear this dress both ways. A perfect dress for date night or the office holiday party.

Before this dress, I had not sewn with velvet yardage before. I have repurposed and reworked existing velvet pieces, but never from scratch. Like getting to know a long pined over crush, you discover unexpected and sometimes surprising things along the way. 

Here are some tips that helped me work with velvet and maintain my love affair with this yummy fabric.  
  • Choose a pattern with a small number of pieces. This reduces the challenge of cutting and matching nap
  • Cut the fabric in single layers paying attention to the direction of the pile of the fibers for duplicate pattern pieces
  • Lay the fabric on a layer of flannel or carpet to prevent it from shifting
  • Work from the wrong side of the fabric to avoid displacing the nap 
  • Use a walking foot when sewing so the layers don't shift
  • Stitch in the direction of the pile
  • Serge the seams for a clean finish
  • Have fun because the end result will be awesome

Happy Sewing,