20th Century, Sewing

Finished project: 1920’s inspired ‘Tango’ dress

I made this dress as a project in university.

The brief was to make a basic fitting toile, and then to draft a garment pattern from that.

This was not the dress to flat pattern draft.  It would have been much, much easier to drape it on a dressform.

But it still turned out pretty well.  We call it the ‘dress that fits anyone’, because it does.  And looks good on them to.

I based the design on a image of Edna St Vincent Millay.  The patterning isn’t at all accurate for a 1920s dress (princess seams!), but the effect is still charming.

The fabric is silk crepe.  There was quite a story with the fabric – I looked and looked, but all the reds I could find had an orange tinge.

So I spent my entire fabric budget on some muted jade green silk charmeuse because it was soooo beautiful.

And then realised that this was the wrong dress for muted jade green silk charmeuse.  And whinged about it for days.

So my dear, sweet friends pooled their money and bought me red crepe as a birthday present (and to stop me from whinging), and it was perfect.

The dress buttons up the back with innumerable little tiny fabric covered buttons.

I got so tired of covering those buttons I swore I would never make fabric covered buttons again.

Yeah, my very next project involved fabric covered buttons.

For the record, I’m pretty sure I got an A on the project.


  1. jackiead says

    Love the dress, it is glorious, you wear it well. Red is definitively the best choice and all the tiny covered buttons add to the exquisiteness of this dress.

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