Anna Sui Eyelet Dress for the Fall
I turned my last trip to Mood Fabrics in Los Angeles into a mommy/daughter date with my cute 8-year-old daughter. Her baptism day was coming up and I promised to make her a new dress to wear. We went straight to the fancy lace area, hoping to be inspired but nothing caught her eye except for a roll of white sequins (and I’m not a huge fan of bling). Then we meandered down the eyelet aisle (though I wasn’t feeling hopeful we’d find anything there since we were just days away from fall). That’s when I saw it, this gorgeous, ivory embroidered cotton lawn with an eyelet border. Editor’s note: MoodFabrics.com has a large selection of eyelet and embroidered fabrics.
With the promise of trying to somehow incorporate the beloved white sequins, my daughter was on board with the Anna Sui eyelet and we left with our Mood bag filled with beautiful fabric (that silk print is also from Anna Sui and will hopefully make an appearance on the Mood Network Blog soon). After a few sketches, my daughter unsurprisingly picked a simple dress style with a sequin collar. As much as she loves a little sparkle, she definitely doesn’t love frou-frou.
Obviously at some point I thought a sequin collar was a good idea since I included it on a number of different sketches for this dress, but as the dress construction unfolded, the sequin collar might have been the worst idea I’ve ever had. Ripping off all the sequin in the seam allowances caused all the little sequins to start falling off before I could go back and tack them down. So not only did I have to secure every sequin touching every edge of the collar, I had to go back and fill in all the holes created by newly missing sequins. A better idea would have been to create a collar and then hand sew on sequins after the fact. Even if it took just as much time, it would have been far less maddening and would have produced a nicer collar in the end. Gotta love the power of hindsight to make you feel like an idiot.
But, at the end of the day, that maddening little sequin collar was a labor of love with stitches made not just by me, but also by grandma. I love that even more than a perfect collar.
That gorgeous eyelet border needed to take center stage and I think the simple dress style let it shine. The cotton lawn called for a lining, but instead I decided to make a separate bias cut slip made from china silk, hemming it right above the eyelet border.
Even though the dress is made from eyelet, a traditionally spring/summer fabric, I truly feel like the sequin collar, the chunkiness of the eyelet, and the ivory color help it transition right into fall….especially in California where temperatures are still in the upper 80’s right now. Pretty soon she’ll be able to pair it with a little cardigan and colored tights and we’ll all start wondering why we don’t wear more eyelet in the fall.