I set out to make a Flora/ Anna hybrid for this velvet a bit like my Valentino silk crepe version in Summer but when it arrived and I saw the amazing drape, I thought it would be more chic with the Anna bodice.
The fabric was from Like Sew Amazing and I luckily got the last of it before it went out of stock. It’s a velvet jersey so quite heavy and stretchy. I was worried about sewing this fabric both because of the velvet and the stretch but it was surprisingly ok. I just cut one layer at a time and sewed in the direction of the nap. However the mess was unreal – I got fluff all over my kitchen cupboards, skirting boards – I even found it in my eyebrows!! I actually ended up buying a new hoover shortly after; no one tells you when you start sewing that you need a great hoover – lesson learned.
For the lining I planned to use a heart print crepe but when I received it, I didn’t have enough fabric for a dress as well as lining for this dress so I ended up using scraps from my Polka Dot Anna. I had to hand sew the sleeves, hem and lining for this dress so it was a bit of a labour of love (I hate hand sewing!) but I’m glad I did because you can see the lining peeking through.
My biggest regret with this dress was doing French seams because they ended up really bulky. The decision to French seam was made out of 1. Fear of fluff and 2. Laziness to not rethread my overlocker. Another lesson learned.
I also ended up making a matching bag which I shamelessly copied from LK Bennett’s design, complete with pearl buttons from Liberty.
When I finished the dress, I thought it looked a bit conservative so I took the slit up a couple of inches. When I wore this again over Christmas with my family I thought it was a little high, so I may have gone a bit too far! But that’s an easy thing to adjust next time I wear it. In general I think it’s a really timeless dress which I’ll wear for many Christmasses to come.