Donna Karan makes it to the party

Seven weeks of procrastinating; seven hours of sewing!  I was thrilled to be picked by Beth of SunnyGal Studio Sewing and be the recipient of her pattern whispering. I wanted to do her, and myself, proud with a special make for my special night. So here she is…..


The pattern is marked as ‘difficult’. To be honest, I didn’t think it was too bad, or at least not as bad as I was expecting. What’s tricky is that the outer dress is made from one gigantic pattern piece, with a smaller piece attached. Cutting and marking took time as the all of the gathers, pleats and drapes needed to be marked. It was hard to fathom the construction at first, but once I got going it wasn’t too bad. I did struggle with my hungry sewing machine munching the fabric now and then. As it’s a one-off occasion dress I tried not to worry too much about construction. So you could say she’s a bit of an artist’s impression!


That said, I made an early mistake when attached the front right sleeve piece. But, as it’s only two pieces sewn together, that was quite a significant error. I tried to rectify it, with mixed results: the ruching no longer draped elegantly across the bust. As you can see, it’s leaving me a little lop-sided! Nevertheless, I persevered. I matched all the other marks and ended up with a working dress. The fabric (which I love) drapes beautifully, and has been quite kind to the numerous minor mistakes. Once I attached the power-mesh lining, the whole thing draped into place. It is, however, rather less elegant on the inside -no close-up shots today!


This dress is the last sewing project of the year, marking a real milestone in sewing achievements. It’s time to let the Janome cool off over the festive season. And the party was a blast, thanks for asking. Life begins…. x


Donna Karan Says It’s PARTY TIME!

Vogue 1342 dress

Regular readers may recall that I won the Pattern Whisperer lottery a few weeks ago! Beth of SunnyGal Studio Sewing kindly posted some suggestions for a perfect dress for my forthcoming birthday party.

I am excited to report that I have now purchased the Pattern Whisperer’s number one suggestion: the Donna Karan for Vogue (V1342). I’m busy selecting fabrics at the moment before I get my head down and start sewing.

Vogue 1342 drawing

I have to say I’m a little intimidated by this dress. It’s classified as an ‘Advanced’ pattern. I thought I was up to the challenge, but going by my recent balls-up on a beginners’ pattern (the gorgeous Colette Patterns’ Dahlia), I’m beginning to wonder if I might be over-stretching myself. I’ve had a browse of the blogosphere and the only reviews I’ve found suggest it’s not the most straightforward pattern to follow. Have a look at this gorgeous peach version by Bloom’s Endless Summer. Clio & Phineas also posted a review here. Hmmm. I’m trying not to be intimidated. But hey, Beth believes in me, and that’s half the battle. I guess the worst case scenario would see me being stapled into this dress pre-party. I just hope I look more ‘Hot Mama’ than ‘Hot Dog’!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some serious sewing to be getting on with. I won’t be posting the finished article until after it’s been covered in champagne bubbles!