The ‘Modern Garden Party’ Dress

I made this dress about a week ago but wanted to share it with all of you.

I decided it was time to make my version of Lady Mary’s garden party/flower show dress from Downton Abbey.  I had the fabric and the inspiration, but just had to settle on the pattern and my final vision.  I wanted to do a modern take on the dress because I don’t wear things that are too heavily vintage.  They just don’t fit in with my own personal style and I wanted to be sure that I would wear it.  I played around with several pattern ideas until finally Colette announced her newest line of Spring/Summer patterns.  As soon as I saw the Hazel dress I knew exactly what I had to do.

So I set to making my own version.  A shorter dress to keep it modern and because I hardly wear long dresses with the California weather.  I very much live off of my Spring/Summer sewing as it easily shifts into something wearable for Fall.  Throw on a sweater and tights and you’re set for Winter too!  I added a bit of lace trim and vintage buttons to the neckline, so it was reminiscent of the original dress I was being inspired by.  And to create the effect of the darker band at the waistline, I made my own belt from a kit from a Fashionable Stitch.

I love how the dress turned out and I know it’s going to get a lot of wear!  More construction details and sources for my materials can be found on my blog, What’s Up, Cupcake?

• Meet the Author • whatsupcupcake

Love what you've seen so far? Subscribe by email to receive all the week's posts delivered to your inbox in one big glorious email every Friday.

Inbox overflowing? Follow us on Bloglovin instead!

Find the WeSewRetro crew chatting on Facebook and sharing pretties on Pinterest.

9 comments… add one

  • Love it! A great modernized version! :)

  • Very nice! I love how you used that dress for inspiration while still keeping it modern and very wearable.

  • This is a really beautiful dress, and your belt is gorgeous! I love that you’ve ‘modernised’ Lady Mary :)

  • This is lovely, so summer-ry and really flattering too. It it is good for me to see the pattern in use on someone of a similar shape – I will have to buy the pattern now!

  • What a great idea to ‘modernize’ the lady mary dress. What about adding a little cream crochet shrug or shawl?

    • I actually have a grey cross between a cardigan/wrap that I wore with it as it was a little chilly in the evening in San Francisco. It doesn’t get nearly enough use so I was excited to see that it went with the dress perfectly!

      • Cool.
        I notice you play a squeezebox too (I play the button type). Nice to meet another retro sewing free reed player.

  • Thank you everyone!

  • This is lovely, really lovely. I can totally see your inspiration in it, too–it’s a great “update.”


Don’t Be Shy » Leave a Comment!