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  • Writer's pictureMarinette

My first Kim dress

Last summer, I attended two wedding very important to me, and I wanted to make a dress worthy of the occasions.


This is an outfit I am incredibly proud of. I don't usually conceptualise and plan a dress for months, but for this one, this is exactly what happened. I've spont countless hours looking for the ideal fabric, impagine the dress in my head, make a toile, another one... A real bespoke work that made this dress even more special to me.


Une femme se tenant dans un jardin souris face a la caméra.  Elle a des cheuevxu chatuns, aux épaules. Elle porte une paire des chaussures oranges, et une robe bleue, avec une encolure en coeur et une jupe circulaire.


The inspiration

I had been wanting to sew more unusual fabrics for a while, and I was particulraly interested in sewing dresses with an overlay. I had imagined a solid colour dress, with a lovely and fancy overlay (like lace, tulle, embroidery, something a bit see-through).


When I looked for such fabrics out there, I immediately fell in love with this embroidered tulle. I find it absolutely gorgeous, and it was the real starter point of this dress.


Détail d'un tissu bleu recouvert d'un tulle noir avec des fleurs brodées dessus

I immediately wanted to pair this tull with a solid and bright fabric, and I found a raw silk, turquoise, that I loved. I envisioned a simple, fitting bodice, and a twirling skirt (of course).


While I was looking for similar dresses, I found Lisa's account, and I saw a dress very similar to the one I had in mind. After a couple of DMs with her to exchange tips and tricls, I got started.



The pattern

For this dress, I chose to make the bodice using the Kim dress, from By Hand London. CI had bought this pattern a while back, but never came to sew it. It seemed like a good option, simple, and exactly what I needed: Its lovely and comfortable straps, and its sweetheart neckline were particularly appealing for me.

Une femme se tenant dans un jardin se tient de profil. Elle a des cheuevxu chatuns, aux épaules. Elle porte une paire des chaussures oranges, et une robe bleue, avec une encolure en coeur et une jupe circulaire.

For the skirt, I initially planned on making a gathered skirt. You'll soon read why I ended with a very different skirt than planned!

Une femme se tenant dans un jardin souris à la caméra.  Elle a des cheuevxu chatuns, aux épaules. Elle porte une paire des chaussures oranges, et une robe bleue, avec une encolure en coeur et une jupe circulaire.


The making of this dress

Since I wasn't too sure of how my overlay dress would look like, I made a trial dress. Not really a toile, because I used exactly the same fabric (for the tulle anyway!). Thanks to this trial dress, I realised two things:

- that the pattern was an impeccable fit and didn't need to change anything!

- that the gathered skirts... really are not for me!

It's not the first time I sewed a gathered skirt, but every time I end up disappointed. Although I usually find them perfect on the mannequin, once it's on me, I find the waist quite unflattering. And this time was no exception!


Une femme se tenant dans un jardin souris face a la caméra.  Elle a des cheuevxu chatuns, aux épaules. Elle porte une paire des chaussures oranges, et une robe bleue, avec une encolure en coeur et une jupe circulaire.

The trickiness of the fabric

Afterwards, I decided to change tactics and pick another model of skirt. This embroidered tulle proved a bit tricky at that stage!


Indeed, it has way more flowers at the bottom edge than the top one, and of course, all flowers are facing towards the same way (towards the top). Since I wanted to respect this, and for the fabric to make sense, I couldn't cut my usual circle skirt: If you cut a circle from a square, you will end up with flowers all over the place and in every direction.

This little jigsaw kept my brain busy for a while, but I managed at the end, by cutting lots of different pieces to make a circle.



Une femme se tenant dans un jardin souris face a la caméra.  Elle a des cheuevxu chatuns, aux épaules. Elle porte une paire des chaussures oranges, et une robe bleue, avec une encolure en coeur et une jupe circulaire.

In a nutshell?

I am thrilled with this dress!

It required lots of thinking, lots of planning, and lots of designing, but barely had any technical complexity.

I absolutely loved using this simple pattern with two fabrics, and I am very happy with the end result which is equally elegant as it's comfortable!

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