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It’s Irrelephant

It's Irrelephant - The Dressed Aesthetic

I’ve never been one to take something at face value. I’ve written before about how we can get creative with our clothes – use a hatbox as a handbag, wear a belt as a headband, and dig into your earring collection as a means to spruce up your lapel. And I feel my eyes are always scanning for things to be used in a manner they were potentially never intended.

Cut Out + Keep

{Sewing}: The Counterdanse - The Dressed Aesthetic

One of my favorite dressmaking adventures ever, The Counterdanse, was featured on the website Cut Out + Keep! You can head over to see my step by step tutorial on embellishing the skirt of my dress. They also interviewed me for the site, to get my thoughts on my style, my fashion icons, and some of my favorite blogs.

{Sewing} Mini-Me

Mini-Me - The Dressed Aesthetic

One of the greatest things in my life is being able to watch my niece grow up – granted, much of this observing has to be done from afar via FaceTime, but every time I get to spend time with her I’m in awe of the person she is becoming. The amazing person she already is. My second greatest thing is probably the fact that, for every dress I make myself, I can make her a miniature version and marvel in the unending cuteness.

{Vintage Repair} : Well Red

{Vintage Repair} : Well Red - The Dressed Aesthetic

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – one of the best parts of learning how to sew for me is the ability to see a dress that is very likely to be forgotten or discarded, and give her the opportunity to feel like new again. I spied this cherry red cutie at Pursuing Andie Vintage – an absolutely stunning Vicky Vaughn with lace trimmed collar and sleeves and a scalloped drop waist, all wrapped up in a cloud of dotted swiss adorableness.

{Upcycling} : Peek-a-boo

Peek-a-boo - The Dressed Aesthetic

This dress was (and still is) a bit of a wounded bird. She has definitely been worn and very, very loved in her time (which makes her all the more beautiful, in my opinion!) There is some color beed from the red panels, scattered pinholes holes here and there, and several popped seams that needed reinforcing. There was also a fair bit of wear and tear and staining on the shoulders from years of love and (I hope) some serious time spent on the dance floor. As she was a bit on the petite side for me anyway, I decided to pull…

{Sewing}: The Counterdanse

{Sewing}: The Counterdanse - The Dressed Aesthetic

My latest sewing project started as so many often do: with an Idea. At a few points in my vintage hunting, I would come across vintage painted mexican skirts or vintage square dancing skirts that had images of dancing couples, with the figures wearing actual miniature skirts. I was so smitten with the 3D quality of them – the idea that there was a miniature world within the skirt, like when you hold up two mirrors opposite each other, creating smaller and smaller landscapes inside.

{Tailoring}: Fanning the Flames

Fanning the Flames - The Dressed Aesthetic

There are a LOT of reasons why I love vintage. The stories the garments come with, the attention to detail, the one-of-a-kind nature. But few things get my heart beating quicker than a glance at the INSIDE of a vintage garment. Back in the day, so much care went into every aspect of making a vintage dress – each seam, each stitch – and care even went to imagining the future woman who would wear her. The adjustments she might want to make. Because fashion was once about longevity.

{Sewing}: Sheer Madness

{Sewing}: Sheer Madness - The Dressed Aesthetic

After the craziness that was the making of the Dahlia Dress (which took a good 6 months to complete in between all of the travel and 12 zillion pattern pieces), Sewanista and I thought it was a good idea to try for a quick win – follow a fairly straightforward pattern and quickly reap the rewards. Ohhhh when will I ever learn that when it comes to my sewing projects, nothing is ever as simple as I expect…

{Tailoring}: Ribbon Roulette

My height (at a respectable 5’9 or 175 cm) was a definite source of despair when I was young. I sprang up like a bean sprout and had no idea how to manage my gangly limbs, which felt like a bunch of sharp angles that lacked a common goal. I’ve definitely grown into my height in later years (and admittedly make myself even more Amazonian with 5 inch heels!) But, as I’ve mentioned before, my fabulous vertical prowess also comes complete with an exceptionally long torso. While I fully (now) embrace my elongation, I have to admit there’s been many a vintage dress I’ve…

the JAWESOME sewing project

I always seem to have quite the adventure when I embark on a dressmaking project and this latest was no exception. This one in particular combined two of my favorite things: sewing and shark biology. Though the impetus is usually different, in general my dresses go from some sort of idea that’s been tickling at the back of my head for awhile until the perfect opportunity arises… Warning: Photo heavy post ahead!