sewaholic saltspring: operation black tie

picture the scene: atlantic city. march. bleak. cigarette smoke and slot machines.


view from 35th floor on the last snow fall of 2014. oh please lord, let it be the last.

i felt like i was smuggling something untoward into the building as i carried my 11-lb featherweight in its case out of the car and into the lobby, taking care not to get blown over by the gale-force winds plaguing atlantic city in the WINTER THAT WOULD NOT END.


i mean, i am sure people have carried stranger things into the borgata hotel than a vintage sewing machine and a bag full of fabric, but i was supposedly on a “work trip”. the fact that there was an entire day in between work events – and that my hotel room had cable and, therefore, easy access to the day-long SVU marathon was really just a bonus.


but not really. truth is, i was happy as a a clam, tucked away on the 35th floor, having a mini-break in broad daylight and in the middle of the week, besides, cutting into some buttery black washed silk from trumart discount fabrics as i plotted my black-tie ensemble for a soiree in jersey city some two weeks hence.


all it needed for true decadence was a long, sparkly godet snuck right into its unsuspecting side seams (from simplicity 2212, if you are keeping track at home). a remnant from mood fabrics got the job done easily. i liked this piece because it had sequins and beads but only required an hour or so with the seam ripper to get all of the beads out of the way. and i only broke three needles before i came to that conclusion!


i got this garment done in two sessions – my cutting session on the floor of my hotel room and a semi-frantic saturday. as in, the day of the wedding. as in, i finished the last seam at 3:45 and had to be waiting in my building lobby for a 4:15 pickup. the saltspring took my panic in stride. its easy instructions soothed me: no worries, friend. we will be done with time to spare.


the construction was easy as pie, true story. i used the lining pieces for both the lining and the outer bodice, in order to eliminate the built-in blousing. i interfaced the lining pieces with some lightweight tricot from fashion sewing supply to avoid any opacity issues as well as provide some light structure to the bodice. instead of making the tie straps i used leftover beaded trim from my shortcut chanel, and then stuck an exposed zipper on the back just for fun.

also: gloves. i am bringing them back, people.


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26 Responses to sewaholic saltspring: operation black tie

  1. sewbecause says:

    I love your version of this dress! So clever how you eliminated the blousing! Good thing the hotel didn’t find a way to charge you extra for bringing a sewing machine you sneaky girl! Such a good idea to find a way to sew on a business trip!

  2. oonaballoona says:

    fingerless gloves, no less.

    that day sounds as fabulous as the dress. you kicked (oh god please, yes, the last) 2014 snowfall’s ass.


  3. maddie says:

    You rock for one, whipping up this dress, two, having a featherweight (I have a 1956’s one), and three, bringing gloves back!

  4. Susan says:

    I adore this make… The trim you used for the straps, the godet insertion, all of it. And YES GLOVES!

    • puu says:

      thank you! this is what was staring down at me when i went home from our lunch last week. the gloves were a last-minute inspiration 🙂

  5. Angela says:

    Looks great! I love the fancy details!

  6. megthegrand says:

    LOVE! The gloves are a fabulous touch to that divine dress. The godet is pure genius!! Hope you had a marvelous time 🙂

    • puu says:

      eh, i am not so much a huge party person, but at least i had the pleasure of sitting there all night and basking in my outfit. 🙂

  7. gingermakes says:

    Awesome! This is so elegant, and you really are rocking the gloves! I love that you smuggled in a sewing machine… I’ve illicitly carried in a pug before, but never an appliance. 😉

  8. Lisette says:

    I highly approve of the glove decision. I hope we get to see this in person!!!

  9. everything about this post is so hardcore.

  10. Clio says:

    Beautiful! And yes, hardcore…. sewing on the go, hemming up to the deadline…

  11. aem2 says:

    I’m with you on the gloves.

  12. Trice says:

    This dress came out nice. You look so lovely.

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