My Dress Inspiration

Where does your inspiration come from? I was reading Sew Busy Lizzy’s Spring/Summer Plans and I wanted to join in the planning fun. I love making plans; even if I don’t finish every single component. Just having the ideas gives me a thrill. Here is what inspires me along with patterns that I think would translate my inspiration into something that is my style.

You’ve seen this dress! I wanted to show you how my head reads this dress. It’s okay if you see sailor dress. I see it, too. I love the sailor look.

Fabric I used: Both red and navy are a linen/cotton blend.

Now, let me show you how my brain is working on future projects.

Star Trek fans, unite! For me, it’s The Next Generation, or TNG, for the uninitiated. This particular dress that Counselor Deanna Troi used in season 1 only, is a call back to 60’s Trek and lasted only that singular season. I’m not super fond of the skant but it does inspire me to make one of Colette’s Macaron dresses that everyone seems to love so much.

Fabric: I know I want to go for the black on the upper part of the bodice and the blue for the majority of the dress (don’t know what’s wrong with the coloring on the Troi pic on the left). Any suggestions for weave/weight of fabric? I want to wear it this Winter so something a little heavier but not too much. My first inclination is a wool twill. But maybe a double knit? I should go hunting to see if how the Macaron looks in a double knit.

I saw this bebe Leatherette Inset dress online and was immediately reminded of the Burda pattern that came out a couple of months ago. I’ve been eager to play with it but that meant I had to work on doing an FBA on it and my brain shut down production on that one fast. I think I’m ready for it again.

Fabric: I’m going faux leather in black, most likely, along with the black suiting of mystery that I bought 2 years ago. I bought a bolt of it and I love it but I can’t remember what it is. I’m eager to work with leather/faux leather for the simple reason that my new machine, named Max (a Juki industrial who tweets by the way) can handle it.

Marie Camargo was a famous ballet dancer. She was the one who started wearing a shorter skirt so you could see her amazing (for the time) footwork. She also started wearing ballet slippers instead of heels. Big change. I don’t know which way I get inspired more…from the 50’s strapless party dress from Gertie’s new book or from the dresses that were worn in the early days of ballet. As an aside, I studied modern dance, not ballet, and while ballet never really interested me performance wise, I still love seeing it performed for me.

Fabric: I’ve already started cutting out a butterfly print in a poly chiffon. I also have a petticoat that I need to finish that will go under this dress.

Where does your inspiration come from? Do you start with images? Do you fondle your fabric? Do you enjoy hiking and are struck with ideas? Tell me!

15 thoughts on “My Dress Inspiration

  1. sewbusylizzy says:

    I’m a combination of pattern and fabric inspiration. Usually I buy a pattern because I love the design lines. And I buy a fabric because I fall in love with the texture or print. I rarely go out with a pattern and buy fabric for it. I find I have no success when I do this. I am pretty fussy and those trips always end in compromise and the projects end in disappointment too.
    I buy plenty of fabric on impulse but I also have some idea of the end result, ie a dress, top etc.

    • Leila says:

      I love hearing how other people go about it. I go fabric shopping with either a pattern in mind or for a general, “I really need to use a certain kind of fabric”.

  2. Brooke says:

    Cool projects you are working to create! (Yay for Star Trek! I met my husband partly because of Trek.) I am inspired by photos/costumes/pattern sketches at times too. Other times, I am inspired by fabric first.

    Hmmm about your fabric for the Troi inspired dress… double knit is nice (usually hard to find the true double knit in a chain-store though) but I think you would do better with a stretch twill – it would probably look less costumey if you are going for an everyday dress. Or maybe even a suiting fabric – suiting might have a better drape than the twill.

    That yellow and white inset dress is cool!

    • Leila says:

      I think my answer to everything lately has been “use a suiting”. Hehe. I do like the idea of using a suiting. The French Seam in town has Italian wools coming in & a number of other fall/winter options…I’m excited! I know they carry suitings…not remembering what twills they have. I do end up searching for a while before I can find the right fabric. 🙂

  3. StephC says:

    Oh looks like such fun to come in the future!

    I vote “early days of ballet.” 🙂

    Inspiration… Hmm… My best ideas come just before I go to sleep… I had some anxiety issues a while ago and learned a meditation technique to calm it down. I don’t have so much anxiety anymore, but I still meditate at the end of most days… I sort of “float” on the top of my mindspace and look over all the ideas roiling around. Often one or two ideas will become clearer and I sort of wander off with them… Also heaps of pinterest, though I tend to use that for research and storage rather than the inspiration itself. If that makes sense… 🙂

  4. Scared Stitchless says:

    I like the leatherette insert dress, would love to see what you make with that. I’ve only just put together my inspiration for spring/summer today too. I’m a pinterest girl through and through! Then I figure out if I have a pattern that fits or whether I need to find one.

  5. Bionic Boo says:

    I can’t wait to see the Star Trek dress! Always loved the looks of the women on that show. Modest yet attractive.

    As for inspiration, I don’t really have anything yet. I’m only a beginner and right now I barely have time to alter all the clothes I buy. I’m still stuck in the find-a-pattern-find-a-fabric phase. Hopefully one day I will be as good as you and be able to just randomly buy fabric that I love and hope to find something to make of it later. 🙂

  6. kelleynymph says:

    I’m actually involved in a Star Trek Burlesque show and while researching this particular outfit for Deanna Troi, I stumbled upon your blog. Nice work! I foun d it very helpful to my own costuming adventure. 🙂

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