Not the Wedding Dress

Well hello there! I have been sewing away lately with not much that's ready to share yet. Wedding preparation sewing is in full swing, with the wedding dress complete (!), five bridesmaids dresses in progress, and a whole slew of other projects and ideas in various stages of production. I have a bit of time before the big date at the end of the July, but definitely need to keep things moving.

Of course, when you're sewing obsessed you somehow end up getting some sewing done between your sewing (and, you know, going to work). So I managed to squeeze this dress into my sewing schedule in time for our dear friends' wedding this weekend.

Pattern: Modified McCall's 7320
Fabric: 2 yds forest green ponte knit from Mood
Cost: $30

What's super special about this dress is that it's actually cut from the same pattern as my wedding dress, but looks totally different. After all the muslins and fitting I had put into creating a pattern for my wedding dress, I of course wanted to play with it some more. So I chopped the length off the pattern, made the dress up in a knit instead of a finicky silk woven, added some off the shoulder sleeves, and generally just had fun with it. 

The other advantage to using my wedding dress pattern is that I was actually able to use the bodice structure from one of my muslins for this dress. I ripped out the bust pads to add in here, and also used the boning (made from zip ties) for this dress, which were conveniently already cut to length.

The sleeves were the biggest challenge on this dress. Not having pattern pieces to work off of, I draped the fabric around until I got something I liked. But then I let Mr. Made critique it and ended up ripping it out... four more times. I finally got a shape that I was happy with. Up close there are some wrinkles, but from afar I think I got the shape I was after. I have never worn an off-the-shoulder dress before and the final design was really kind of constricting. I definitely couldn't raise my hands above my hands for dancing and had to drape my coat over my shoulders rather than put my arms through the sleeves. Not to mention I deeply regretted the side zipper - what was I thinking? But it's all worth it in the name of fashion, right? A fancy wedding is definitely the opportunity to wear something a little impractical.

The rest of the dress was pretty comfortable. It is a thick ponte knit in the perfect color from Mood, which I spent quite a bit of time looking for. As I mentioned above, it also has excellent internal structure, with bust pads and fifteen pieces of boning all supported at the waist with a waist stay. This keeps everything up and in place, and the shoulder straps really just hang there as decoration. Unlike my actual wedding dress, on this version I used a bra closure for the waist stay so that I could set it on the smallest setting in the morning and adjust it to the largest one after dinner. Waist stays aren't the most comfortable thing, but I love the security of a fully-boned and supported dress!

I also used the wedding as an opportunity to try out some accessories ahead of my big day. The necklace is from Rent the Runway and gave me the chance to use the service in a low-pressure situation (I loved it!). I also wore my new shorts underneath, which create a nice silhouette with no panty line.

All in all it was a beautiful wedding and a great chance to try some things out before the big day. Now I will just be looking for more opportunities to wear this dress out again!


  1. wow you look so glamorous. great shape on you and lately I love the tulip hem, so pretty.

  2. The sleeves you added are lovely! Very modern princess.

  3. So pretty! Gorgeous colour on you.

  4. That green is definitely your colour. You look beautiful. The dress is amazing. Well done. Brava.

  5. Not only is this dress beautiful but I bet it was comfortable too! A real plus with ponte :) The colour makes your skin looks luminescent :)

  6. Wow I guess I haven’t been getting comment notifications and just saw your lovely comments. Thanks everyone!


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