Here at Charity Shop Chic, April has been renamed ‘Carrie Bradshaw Month’ and I am attempting a series of remakes in tribute to everyone’s favourite fictional fashionista. This is part 3 of the series.
The third project in this series starts with a flowery skirt. This came from the Cancer Research shop in Whitby and cost £6.00. It is size UK 14.
Here’s the inspiration picture: Carrie in the SATC movie!
The best feature of this dress is that spectacular ‘balloon’ peplum. A peplum like this is really a flared overskirt gathered onto a shorter, narrower lining.
I came up with a really basic design for a dress with a balloon peplum. Here’s a quick schematic, but it’s based on a strapless tube with elastic at the back neckline to hold it up, and belted to produce a waist (of sorts). The pink shaded sections below are cut from the fashion fabric and the white sections are cut from a lining fabric (you guessed it… bits of an old sheet). There wasn’t enough fashion fabric for the skirt, so I cut the section covered by the peplum from lining too, to save material. The blue arrows below are supposed to show that the peplum lining is shorter than the peplum, and the white section of the skirt is shorter than that, so it isn’t seen.
The bodice is essentially a tube, cut lower at the back neck, with some elastic gathering it at the back, to hold it up. There’s also a belt cut from a narrow tube of the offcuts, slightly gathered as per the inspiration picture.
Back to the red flowers… First thing to do was cut off the waistband and iron/steam the heck out of those pleats. It was tough going. The next tough job was to work out how to cut all the pieces I needed from the minimal amount of fabric. I won’t bore you with my cutting plan, but it took me a while to figure it out. Here are some in-progress shots…
…the skirt, with the part that’ll be hidden cut from lining to preserve fabric…
…the balloon peplum, which possibly could have done with being a bit more balloon-y….
….and the bodice. You can see I cut about 5cm off the back.
I used my tried and tested bias-binding-as-a-cheater’s-facing technique for the top edge. Open binding, pin right sides together, sew, press to inside, topstitch.
Here’s a close-up. I put some elastic in the channel created by the binding/facing to hold the thing up.
After sewing the peplum, skirt and bodice together at the waist, this is how it looked. Pretty shapeless.
Not to worry though, I whipped up a quick belt in self fabric as per the inspiration picture. I have to say that personally the self belt is a bit much for me… when I wear this in future I think I will pair it with a white belt (or some other colour) just to break up those flowers a bit.
Here’s the end result. I’m pretty happy with it, considering the really basic design and minimal amount of fabric. What do you think?