Last year (it always sounds like a long time ago when I write that, even though it was only a matter of weeks) we went to my nephew’s wedding in Kingscliff. The dress code was “formal”, so I decided that it was a perfect opportunity to make something for myself that was a little out of the ordinary. Lekala 4141 presented itself to me as a worthy candidate.
This dress appeared to be fairly simple. There was a limited number of pattern pieces – only five, I think – and it was to be sewn in a knit. But of course it was Lekala, so the instructions did take patience. I was using a large scale printed poly slinky knit from the Darn Cheap Fabrics $2 table, and spent a quite a bit of time figuring out where best to place the pattern pieces on the fabric for the most aesthetically pleasing look.
The skirt was easy enough to construct, as it was just a tube. Similarly, the bodice front and back were easy to construct – a strapless top with elastic through the top of the bodice. But the overlay took much more time to figure out. The construction is rather ingenious! It is self-lined and required quite a bit of pinning, marking, seaming, unpicking, rechecking, pinning again, seaming, unpicking again, re-reading of the instructions, draping on Ada, etc etc etc. Eventually though I worked it all out!
This was a surprisingly comfortable dress to wear. Other than it needing a strapless bra, there were no closures, it was held up by elastic and the overlay, and the slightly dropped waist was defined with an elastic casing as well.
The next photo shows you the construction details a little more. It’s really a strapless dress with an attached self-lined overlay. The armhole drape is very low – right down to the waistline – and the shoulder drape is much shorter.
I don’t have anything else like this in my wardrobe! I accessorised with flat sandals, as the actual ceremony was beach side and I had injured my ankle not long before and didn’t want to risk hurting it again. I had crystal earrings and matching pendant that had been gifts from my husband for our 15th wedding anniversary, and had zebra-printed pearlised nail wraps on my toe and finger nails for a little bit more fun. I suspect that I have become the crazy middle-aged aunt who wears slightly outrageous things…
I think that Lekala is a brilliant source of patterns for special occasion wear. This was customised to my measurements, and the lengths and widths were all perfect.
I have no idea when I will wear this dress again, but considering that it only cost me around $10 to make (not including my time of course!) that doesn’t particularly bother me. I’m looking forward to making more formal dresses as the girls get older – I think that Lekala will definitely come into its own then.