"Resign yourself, Catherine! Shops must be visited! Money must be spent! Do you think you could bear it?" - Northanger Abbey

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Clara Bow Dress

Saw a documentary on 'Clara Bow' and in one of her film posters she was wearing a dress like this. Loved the fabric combinations. 
Source: flickr.com via Lady on Pinterest

So I think I might make one using the portrait blouse attached to a dirndl skirt. Need to find a drapey enough polkadot fabric though.
Might fit into one of the historical sew a long challenges?

Source: google.com via Lady on Pinterest

Found a full length pic of the dress. Looks like it has pockets.

my updated design - with modified skirt


  1. Cute dress, and love the colour combinations! It does indeed look like welt-pockets on the skirt, they may be rudimentary though, put anything in them and it would ruin the lines of the skirt.
    Hmm, if you want a look that is as close as possible, I would rather go with an A-line skirt than a gathered... The silhouette might be more in keeping with the inspiration. Just an idea!
    BTW, I know you've long wanted to play around a bit more with your patterns, I'm so very happy for you that you've started to alter and mix them more! Great work!

    1. I'm a bit nervous about matching skirt to top to make a dress....last time I tried they ended up not matching. Have you got any tips?

  2. Oh, it's a bit hard to describe without pictures, but I'll give it a go... =)
    If I remember correctly, you have a pencil-skirt pattern that works. Start with that, change the side-seam so it's straight vertical all the way to the hem (parallell to the center line). Then follow Gertie's tutorial on how to change it into an A-line skirt by omitting the waistdart:

    When done, measure the pattern waistline for back and front (although they should be equal), note down the number. A skirt like this tends to be snug in the waist, while the blouse probably has a generous ease at the waist.

    Figure out where your truewaist is at the blouse-pattern. Measure the blousepattern, compare it to the skirt and deduct how much the blouse needs to be reduced by. Either add that to the existing waist-tuck, or make a second tuck between the first tuck and the side-seam.

    Measure again to make sure the bodice matches the skirt =) A toile might come in handy as well, I always find there's something to adjust.

    Good luck!