looking for fabric recommendation

hostaheaven-618March 31, 2011


I'm planning on making a sleeveless summer dress to wear to a wedding and would like a recommendation on a fabric that would be cool and not wrinkle. What would you recommend?

Thanks much for your input.


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I made a sleeveless dress last year for my daughter's April wedding. I used silk Dupioni. I underlined the Dupioni with cotton batiste to add a bit of structure and because I heard that it could help keep wrinkles to a minimum.

My other daughter is getting married this July and I made another sleeveless dress using a Satin back Shantung made by Logantex. I did not feel the need to underline this fabric. Every time I've tried on the dress, it feels very lightweight, cool and comfortable.

Do you have a pattern picked out? Where is the wedding taking place and which month? Is it daytime or evening, casual or formal?


Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   April 1, 2011 at 12:51AM
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Hi Laurie,

Thanks for your reply. The wedding is in Virginia Beach, right on the beach, in early July. I don't have a pattern picked out yet, but that's going to be a priority once we return home (my husband and I winter in Florida and will be returning to MN soon). The style that I have in mind would be sleeveless, modified crew neck and maybe an A-line drape down to my knees. I was thinking of maybe also making a little lightweight short sleeved jacket for the evening. The actual wedding takes place late afternoon and the reception will go into the evening. I believe the dress code is kind of a dressy casual. The Satin back Shantung material sounds very interesting, but maybe too formal? I'd appreciate your input. We are friends of the brides parents, so don't want to out dress them! Do you know if the Logantex comes in patterned fabric or just solid colors?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2011 at 12:02PM
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Good idea to have something to keep warm for the evening.
I have only lived in So. Calif. and I know that even in Summer, anywhere near the beach can get chilly when the sun goes down.

The Shantung fabric is reversible. There is a super shiny side and then there's the other side which has a very faint shine and some texture to it. For the dress I just finished for Dd's wedding in July, I used the not-so-shiny side.

I've seen other people wear this type of fabric to weddings and special events and I don't think it looks too formal.
If you keep your jewelry simple, I think this fabric would work just fine. You could make a simple jacket using the same fabric or you could use a patterned brocade fabric that coordinates. Another possibility is to wear a nice knit cardigan with the dress instead of a jacket.

The Shantung I've seen is only solid. If you want to add pattern...maybe a patterned silk scarf, or a patterned brocade jacket, or a patterned knit cardigan. I was looking at a recent Talbot's catalog and saw a couple of nice soft floral cardigans...very muted and soft colors.

Here's some pictures of my current dress so you can see the fabric. Still needs to be hemmed (waiting to see which shoes I'll wear) and pressed.

3/4 sleeve jacket

Clutch purse

Button & fabric up close

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 2:54AM
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Beautiful classy outfit, Laurie.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 12:32PM
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Remember if you make a jacket, you can use the reverse side for collar, cuffs or piping.

Beautiful outfit!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2011 at 10:07AM
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Laurie, I couldn't agree more, your dress is beautiful! The color you have chosen is gorgeous, very subdued - don't want to take the spotlight off the bride - and yet quite elegant. I just hope my dress ends up looking half as nice. The style of your dress is very similar to what I have in mind. Would you mind telling me which pattern you used? The matching clutch bag is such a good idea!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2011 at 10:42AM
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Thank you sjislander, evaf55, & Chris.

I did use the shiny side of the fabric in one place...the piping on the clutch. The clutch pattern I got from another GW sewing friend on this forum...pattiohio. I have not seen her posting here for a while. Such a nice and helpful person.

The dress pattern is Very Easy Vogue V8188. I raised the neckline up a couple inches from the original pattern.

The jacket is McCall's M6042 (View A). This is a 3/4 sleeve with the cuff folded up. Since I wanted no folded cuffs, I just shortened the sleeves 3".

The Vogue dress pattern includes a jacket but I had already made that jacket before (& wore it with a different dress). I wanted to try a different pattern this time. The McCall's jacket has no collar and the sleeves are constructed using 2 pieces. The Vogue jacket used a one piece sleeve.

I learn new things every time I try a new project. With this dress, I learned how to sew an invisible zipper. I never even knew that there was a separate zipper sold (for "invisible"). I also bought an invisible zipper foot for my machine.

Another new thing I learned was how to cut bias strips and sew them together and make piping. This will come in very handy when I attempt to do some re-upholstery later on this year!

Vogue 8188

McCall's M6042

    Bookmark   April 3, 2011 at 6:06PM
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Laurie, thanks for all your help. Now I can't wait to get home so I can start this little project. Just hope my dress turns out as nice as yours! Best wishes for your daughter's wedding!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2011 at 6:35PM
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Thank you : )
Have fun with your project and keep us posted!!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2011 at 11:09AM
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