Vogue #2890 – an elegant Bellville Sassoon design.
So Debbie Permoda was a student at Tchad for a while. She needed an evening gown to wear when she gave up her title as Mrs. Indiana and came to us with the chiffon confection that Bellville Sassoon has had in the Vogue pattern book for years.
She wanted a striking red satin and chiffon dress that would hold up as both pageant wear and as a well-made evening gown.
Let’s get started.
First off, sorry about the darkness in some of the photos. Debbie was burning the midnight oil more than once on this project and we didn’t always get the lighting right at 12:30 am.
The two most difficult things with this project were probably getting the ruching balanced into the seams along the front and top. After that, it was the long sad song that we all sing as we set silk chiffon hems by hand. And we sing it profoundly, especially in cases like this. We wrote about how she balanced the ruching over on this post.
We modified the design in three ways:
1. We did not include the silk flowers down the front. Debbie went to the wholesale jewelry warehouse and bought rhinestone broaches to use if it needed last-minute sparkle.
2. We gave the back of the inner corset and self fabric two full length seams instead of just darting it. Both times we have had this particular pattern in class the back has always been too boxy for the look we like best. So you may find yourself adding darts or seams in the back to shape it more if they are busty or have a smaller than average waist.
3. Instead of using one invisible zipper for all of the layers on the left side, we included a satin facing and closed the corset layer with a heavier metal separating zipper. This is a nice touch that we like to put into very fitted gowns, especially if they are strapless. It adds a bit to the time it takes for the gown to come together, but it is well worth the effort and engineering.
We bound the lower edge of the corset with matching satin bias strip and then attached the lining to the outside of corset in a lapped seam to help keep it flat and avoid bulk. This was basted and then slipstitched into place and the rest of the dress was draped and positioned over this fully finished inner construction.
And with the corset finished and fitted, the linings set, and the shape right, we went on to basting together the draped skirt sections.
…And… On to the final fittings:
This dress will go nowhere. Well, it will go anywhere that can handle it, but it won’t slip or pull or slide is what we’re saying here. We’d say it allows you to breathe easy, but you won’t be breathing quite as deeply as you’d like as much in this, so we’ll lean towards saying it will give you peace of mind instead.
And since its construction, it has been worn by a number of women in the pageant world. This dress was built to last in a way that you almost never see unless you are making it yourself.
You can read about Vogue #2890 on Pattern Review here.