Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Tank Dress

So, ever since Royal Wedding Fever struck the world, I've been a little bit obsessed with Kate Middleton's fashion choices. I love her ladylike style, how she actually wears her outfits more than once, and the fact that not every item she chooses is a designer piece worth thousands of dollars. I especially love all her dresses (the classic sheath is just delicious). Oh yeah, and the nude pumps she wore all through Canada. Want those. :)

This dress was inspired partly by my newfound passion for those one-piece ensembles (I've been wearing separates way too much for the past four years or so) and also by one of my favorite summer items - the tank top. When there's no air-conditioning and the temperature is in the upper nineties, with 100% humidity that makes it feel like one hundred and fifteen (only a slight exaggeration), pretty much the only thing I can stand to wear is shorts and a tank top. Sooo... I decided to take that favorite piece and expand it into something just as comfy and versatile - a tank dress.

This fabric was given to me in a bag of vintage textiles (which included the fabric for my 70s-inspired skirt) and I decided it would be perfect for a test run of my idea. The color isn't my best (it actually looks kind of green in these photos, but it's much more grey/blue) which meant I wouldn't be devastated if it didn't turn out the way I hoped.

I took one of my tanks, folded it in half and placed it on the crease of the fabric. Using that as a very rough guide, I cut out the dress. I was kind of freaked out because I don't think I've ever tried something so completely pattern-free, but I figured the knit would be forgiving.

It was. I sewed the dress together at the sides, hemmed it up and bound the neck and arm holes with bias cut from the leftover fabric. The "belt" is simply the excess fabric I cut from the hemline. :)

Overall, I am pleased with how it came out. The dress is a tad tighter than I'd like and it's further emphasized by the thin, clinginess of the fabric, but I know that when I try this again I'll just cut more generously and use a heavier knit. In an amazing color, of course. 

This was definitely a fun experiment and the end result feels very ready for tea with The Queen. ;) I can't wait to try this out with some layers when fall rolls around. Cardigans, jackets and et cetera. Mmm...

What I'm Wearing:
  • Tank Dress - made-by-me from vintage fabric
  • Heels by Mootsies Tootsies Collection - thrifted
  • Vintage Clutch by La Regale LTD
  • Headband - 90 cents at the dollar store
  • Bird Cage Necklace - made by me
  • Earrings - Kohl's
  • Claddagh Ring and Silver Bracelet - hand-me-down

    Oh yes, and I just had to show off my glitter toenails. I got the idea for these on Pinterest and was very pleased with the end result. I can't wait to experiment with different colors and layering over other polishes. Definitely an easy and fun thing to try out! (Easier than getting achieving perfectly painted "normal" nails, in my opinion.)

    So... has Kate Middleton's wardrobe inspired any or your fashion choices? Or any projects? Please do share! I love to hear what other people think of this new fashion icon. :)



    Ella said...

    Kate has DEFINITELY influenced my fashion....I am in love with the sheath dress, even more than I used to me...and I might even give a wedge a try.

    Amanda, your dress is amazing!! I wish I could sew, because that outfit looks SO comfortable

    Kelsie said...

    I like you outfit! And your shoes are adorable! :o)

    KaHolly said...

    What a fun post! I just love your dress and applaud you for not only doing it, but for having such success. Just lovely.

    anna olivia said...

    LOVELY! I want a Claddagh ring badly... ;)

    Anna said...

    I love the dress! It's something that I would definitely wear.

    Bets said...

    What a lovely dress! You may not love the color, but it looks so ethereal in that setting. It's a great mix of classic and comfortable. :)

    Erin said...

    Wow - I love that dress! - I'm going to make one for myself I think.
    And I LOVE how Kate dresses - so stylish while being modest. I wear wedge heels more now because she does, and also I found a youtube video about how to do the soft curls like Kate does; it's my new favourite hairstyle.

    Miss Grace said...

    Pretty! :)

    Rissi said...

    Unique blog Amanda! I don't think I've read many that are about fashion, but you posted some really pretty pictures here.

    Christine said...

    So pretty! Love the color.

    The First Words said...

    Yes! I actually just devoted two evenings to "stalking" the lovely Duchess on her Canada trip...and beyond;) Her style is SO classy. She's made me even more in love with clutch purses, inspired me to wear wedges, and made me wish hats were in vogue in the US! Love your dress!

    Amanda Flynn said...

    Aw, thank you all so much. I enjoyed reading your comments in regards to Kate M. Does anyone know of a really good blog that follows her fashion adventures? :)

    Anonymous said...

    Hi Amanda,
    I love your blog so much. I have been a fan of it for so long. Your posts are always so great. I love the dress. It is gorgeous.
    -Mary Drennen

    Anonymous said...

    Too cute Amanda.

    Charise Christianson

    Amanda Flynn said...

    Mary, it's comments like yours that keep me blogging. Thank you so much for the encouragement. :)

    Charise - Thanks! :)