To expand her 1950’s wardrobe, Miss Connie Bonacorsi of the Doll Wardrobe asked us to make her this dress. We were so excited when we saw it — what’s not to love about the curvy, unusual bodice lines and built-in bow?
Building the mockup was fairly straightforward, so that didn’t take long. But the question of fabric remained — what kind of material would be best to execute this show-stopping dress? The original had a lace overlay, but Connie wasn’t sure she wanted another lacy dress.
We settled on this luscious silk duppioni, surmising that its nubbly, crunchy surface would give the dress a similar visual texture to lace of the original, while avoiding the need to find (and match!) the perfect color of lace.
Now that the fabric was sorted out, we could set to work. It didn’t take us long to get the duppioni looking like the dress it was meant to be! However, we still had a problem: finding the perfect velvet ribbon. It’s an essential part of the design, but after scouring our favorite fabric haunts, we found nothing suitable.
Fortunately, Melinda knew of a shop in Seattle’s Queen Anne neighborhood with a fabulous ribbon room. Amidst the rolls of hand-dyed silk piping and vintage French laces, there it was — the perfect velvet ribbon. Dainty, narrow, and delicate, the dress now had its finishing touch.