August 5, 2010

A dress for the pinstripe?

This week, I really wanted to make myself a dress in this infamous pinstripe fabric. I gave up the idea of making trousers from it a long time ago. You gave me too many appealing suggestions for dresses.

I thought I had finally cracked it.
Something like this. Practical, wearable if weather starts to cool down a bit more and with just a nice touch of vintage-style... and loads of opportunity to play with the direction of the stripes.

It was to get a half circle skirt with the seams at center front and back, forming chevrons. I originally planned for the front view on the left but while working on the pattern, I thought the collar on the right might work better.

I took a bit of ease out of my (standard ease included) sloper and made a quick bodice muslin to check the fit, the length of the dropped waistline and, crucially, whether or not I could get in and out of it with just a zipper in the bodice side seam.
And what do you think? It's rather nice isn't it? Quite suitable for a subtle stripe. Unfortunately, I think a fair amount of its nice-ness is down to the fact that the drabby lilac of this fabric actually suits my coloration rather well. Gentle and almost sophisticated. Now imagine the same shape in that pinstripe fabric, which besides being mainly black, has a bit of sheen and a very different, much sharper hand... Hm...

I have another option, inspired both by my shelf-bust dress and by the autumn winter fashion show looks (Louis Vuiton anyone?)

I could easily adapt the bodice of the other dress and in this design, I could in fact make use of the slight bit of stretch in this fabric (although that would bring up the question of lining). I might make a band of about 15 cm wide at the bottom of the skirt with the stripes running horizontally and of course, I could wear it, like the ones in the LV show, with a cardigan for autumn.
Only questions: would that be too much of a rip-off and/or would the effect be too 'milk-maid'-like?

Could you help me make up my mind?


  1. Oh wow - I was looking at LV's collection yesterday and thought of you and your pinstripe!
    I like their use of contrast to make their pinstripe look fresh, maybe you could incorporate something similar - floral? piping? velvet? chiffon? tulle? Something to soften the 'harshness'.

  2. I don't think a black pinstripe dress would read "milkmaid" at all. Still, I like the design that you made the muslin for, the chevrons at center front/back would be awesome.

  3. Petite Chere,

    I am a silent reader of your blog: just reading and not commenting but enjoy your own fashionjourney and creative process. But today I thought I just had to drop you a little line and show you some support. So via the account of my loving boyfriend here is my 'kattebelletje' to you. I hope you don't mind and know that I love your blog!

    I agree with 'Big in Japan'. The muslin already looks quite interesting, and with the final design in pinstripe it would be like a variation/feminine interpretation on 'the suit'. I don't associate the muslin with a 'milkmaid' appearance. It's just a good and witty outfit for the Dutch after-summer-days. Go for it!

    Have a good weekend!

  4. I'm weighing in late… I like the second dress. With a cute croppy cardi, you could get lots of multi-seasonal wear out of it. And no, it doesn't read milmaid…unless you decide to do Heidi braids. LOL And it's an homage to LV! What's not to love about that?