Valentino Shell Crepe Flora

I bought this Ex-Designer fabric from the Fabric Godmother pop up at New Craft House over a year ago and I’ve sat on it for a while, not knowing what pattern would do it justice.

I was initially imagining an Anna dress – although I wasn’t enthused about doing all the pattern matching for the skirt since it’s such a big bold print. I also wanted something with a bit of a nod to the shell pattern so I toyed with the idea of a scalloped edge Flora, but was worried about it being too twee. In the end I settled on a simple circle skirt for minimum pattern matching and also lovely drape, and a Flora bodice with Kew side straps which have a lovely curve that reflects the shell pattern.


In order to attach the Kew straps to the Flora I had to extend them by a couple of inches because the Flora bodice is narrower on the shoulders. I also took the neckline down by a couple of inches, and the back even more so.

I lined the dress in blush pink gossamer crepe from White Lodge Fabrics which is my go-to for lining. I didn’t line the skirt – if it was closely fitted it would be sheer but since the skirt is so drapy it works without lining.

Most of my fancy dresses are Annas so this makes a nice change and so far I’ve worn it for a wedding and on a day trip on the British Pullman – it’s the perfect dress when you need to be a little fancy but don’t want full on leg slit glamour like the Anna dress.

My only regret is not buying the pink colourway as well…!

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