Project Lead: Elle Nguyen
To tell you the truth, the design for the Elle Dress was an experiment.
For the longest time, I’ve been searching for a summer dress but I haven’t been able to find anything that compliments my shape, is super comfortable, and super fun to wear. So, I started playing with different silhouettes that I already love – fitted tops, short sleeves, and A-line skirts.
Another issue, however, popped up as Ames and I were shopping for fabrics. Fabric stores are dangerous for us, specifically our budgets – we tend to grab fabrics that we love but don’t have an existing project to pair it with. This spring season was especially dangerous – We found so many cute designs and one of them featured a picturesque scenery of a waterfront city.
How was I going to draft a dress pattern
that would show off the entire scenery,
especially on my petite figure?
I laid out the fabric onto the table and decided to divide up the scenery into “city” and “trees”. The trees would decorate the top part of the dress and the cityscape would be fanned out on the skirt part of the dress.
Fabric pattern issue solved! Next, the silhouette …
I have always been a fan of the sweetheart neckline – the name itself is so cute! This wide neckline lets the warm sun kiss my skin, but also keeps me cool on those hot, hot days. Also, for summer frolics, I prefer a sleeveless dress, so I can plunge my arms into water pools or overstuffed picnic baskets without getting my sleeves dirty. Unfortunately, my boxy body shape requires sleeves to create that hourglass illusion. So, I drafted a super cute peephole sleeve cuff that would widened the shoulder line.
The skirt was a bit of a nightmare – I drafted and tested the skirt pattern twice and still ended up mucking about with the fabric skirt three more times. The problem was the cityscape artwork – I couldn’t draft a conventional flare skirt pattern because the cityscape wouldn’t curve with the design. I also couldn’t divided up the cityscape to create a multi-panel skirt because the panels would look too mismatched. After reworking and reworking the skirt, I found a happy medium that let me keeps the entire cityscape and produced a cute flared skirt. The best part? I have pockets!
Custom fashion design allows for whimsical dreams to come dream … with a little bit of hard work and persistence. Fortunately, that’s our focus here at Betsuni – Design. Fashion. Anything Handmade.