I loved the film The Two Faces of January, which I saw a couple of months ago. I so enjoyed its old-fashioned approach to story and character and thought the performances excellent. And the clothes – an inspiration! Especially this yellow shift dress that made Kirsten Dunst look so elegant and cool.
I left the Duke of York’s cinema in Brighton feeling that yellow dress, even though yellow is a colour that I have hardly ever worn. So how lucky that, on the way to the bus stop, I passed Ditto Fabrics in Kensington Gardens. Well, when I say I passed Ditto, that would of course be a wrong course of action: I went in. And lo! I spied yellow fabric. And not just any old yellow fabric – a Wayne Hemingway-designed retro print with touches of charcoal grey and pink in amongst the yellow.
I let the fabric sit in my workroom for several weeks before I settled on this pattern – Vogue 1350.
I wanted something a bit different from my usual fitted bodice/flared skirt, and I got it. Everything about this design is unusual, from the curved side seam to the cap sleeve that’s cut as part of the bodice. It fastens with snaps, so no problem there for my trusty snap press, more used to giving service in the name of western wear.
It’s also really difficult. It was a novel experience, after making so many shirts, to work my way through a pattern without having a clue what was coming next – and I did a fair bit of unpicking. I lined the dress with cotton lawn, and I like its structured but casual feel and the easy fit given by the curved seams. O – and I love the colour!
This is what it looks like after I’ve sat at my desk in it for a whole morning…. bearing up pretty well!