My Help Cometh From the Lord!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

"Knock It Off" - Louis Vuitton Dress: McCalls Skirt 4870 and New Look Top 6448 - A Match Made on Earth!

A "Bright Sunshiny Day"
I know. I know exactly what you might be thinking.  This is NOT Simplicity 2473.'re right.  It is here (I would put a pic here but this post is all about another dress!)  in it's unhemmed state (REALLY that is all that I have left to do is the hem).  Now on to this post.  I absolutely, positively could NOT resist making this dress!  My incentive was the "Knock-Off" Contest over at  The contest ended yesterday and you could have seen me scrambling to submit my entry.  Scramblin' I tell ya!  Had it not been for the contest this would have been a different dress!  It's one of those projects that 1) takes your skill level to a new heights and 2) reminds you of why you practice this craft in the first place.  YEAH BABY!!!

Being a little goofy!

I did a basic review on but am going to detail it more beware!  The idea came when I saw Kerry Washington in the dress at the 2011 White House Correspondents' Association Dinner.  I immediately thought about the fabric that I had that looks similar.  I began to research the dress.  The more I saw, the more I liked it. It took me a number of searches but I was FINALLY able to come up with a view of the back.  The one in the collage below is actually a picture of a picture.  I had to use my camera.  

I then conducted a search for a similar my stash. Not there.  I began to think what it would be like if I combined two different patterns.  My first thought was to use V8615 because of the back neckline.  I just needed to find a skirt.  That's when I decided on M4870.  It had the slit in the back that I was looking for.  As I thought more about this combination, I realized that with V8615 I would have to do something with the sleeves.  Either draft new ones (check me out, sounding like it's no big deal - lol.......just draft em!) or somehow widen them?  Nah.  Not enough time.  Not even sure if I'd want to do that given enough time.  Thus began my quest for a bodice.

Back view

This is my first NL pattern EVER and I must say I like it.  I almost left the fabric store without it.  Just as I was walking away from the pattern thinking that I had no success in finding what I was looking for, a friendly still voice who I will call the Holy Spirit, lead me to check out the NL book.  Bingo!  This is it!  Then......I started thinking......when have I paid regular price for a pattern???? I know right!  It's only $3.99  - that's the price I pay for Vogue patterns on sale.  I can do this!    
Side view with a slit

The ENTIRE COLLECTION is to live for!  If you've not seen it already you MUST check it out.  I settled on this dress but managed to borrow from a pant set in the collection that had a mixture of fabrics throughout.  This idea I seized for the bodice.  The solid black bodice just didn't give the look I wanted.   I do love the way it turned out.  I must have watched the runway show on 10 different occasions. It was sooooo much fun! 

I noticed that View B of this NL pattern (I used View A) has a V-neckline in the front.  I thought that somehow I could mix pattern pieces to get the look I wanted using the front of B for the back of A.  However, as I started to lay the pieces one on top of the other I realized that I would be better off changing View A to my liking.  Let B be B.  I also noticed that the neckline in View B is not as deep as I wanted nor as deep as that of the inspiration piece.  I began looking through our library of resources (Virginia's and mine) and happened upon "Finally It Fits". about RIGHT ON TIME!  It's a home patternmaking system.  It tells how to create a V-neckline from an existing pattern.  It was very easy to follow. I will spare you the explanation and just provide a picture instead!

Forward march!
The NL pattern calls for a band but I finished the neckline with facing instead.  I did not cut the top front on the fold.  I wanted it to have a center seam.  Same with the skirt front.  I began by sewing the top.  Once I'd sewn the center and the sides I fitted the neck facing and discovered that it was too big so I created a center seam to rid the excess fabric.  I ended up having to do this twice more once I began to fit the dress to my body.  SIDE NOTE-  I SHOUDDA MADE A MUSIN!  And I probably would have if not for the crunch time frame.  Time won't be an issue in the future.  I wasted waaay to much fabric.  WAAAAAY TOO MUCH! 
Peek a boo wrong side of fabric
Once I got the dress sewn up it was too big!  I had to take in all sides except for the back to get the fit I wanted.  For the top I cut a size 10 in the shoulders and 12 every place else.  For the skirt I cut a size 12 in the waist and 14 in the hips.  The waist was about 3" lower than my normal waistline.  I was a little nervous about fixing this one but everything worked out okay. Still.....waaaay to much fabric!  The dress now has just the right amount of ease that makes it really comfortable.  I added extra seam allowance to the back for zipper placement.  I'd read this in a Nancy Zieman book that one should always cut extra allowance for a zipper.  It seems that whenever I run into problems with zippers it usually is due to the fact that I don't have enough seam allowance to work with.  

I felt as though I really needed to do SOME hand sewing on this garment so the narrow hem on the sleeves are handsewn and of course the hem of the dress itself.  Of course this post would not be complete without an inside pic....Not!  Nothing spectacular, again no time to do any fancy finishes. 

CONCLUSION:  I had a GREAT time with this project even though I didn't have much of it....time that is. I now have the belief  that if I want it....I can make it!  Thanks for stopping by. Happy Sewing to all.....and.....BE BLESSED!


  1. This is gorgeous! I love your interpretation!

  2. Well don't you just look lovely! I love how you are so daring in trying new styles and playing with patterns. The Holy Spirit is truly the greatest HELP there is! And your dress really did turn out lovely. I hope you win the contest:)

  3. Gorgeous dress. Good luck in the contest.

  4. Truly an inspirational dress!!! I adore your knock-off of the LV dress. Again another impressive creation by you!

  5. Love it! What a great job (and very creative).

  6. You did a fantastic job....great knock off interpretation.

  7. I absolutely love it! The colors are gorgeous and I adore the back of the dress!

  8. I love your version, it looks great on you too! Way to go!

  9. Beautiful dress! And I love the picture"Forward March" that is so chic!


Thanks a bunch for stopping by! BE BLESSED!