Saturday, January 10, 2009


Here is my latest creation - and so far, my absolute favourite!
(Please click on the images for greater detail)

I adore hydrangea flowers, and have several large bushes where I live. Of course, they are suffering in our drought. But still, the lush blue-purple fairly vibrates with intensity! I think of them as a very "old" flower, rather 'olde worlde' and nostalgic. So when I came across this wonderful cotton fabric on-line, I had to have it! It turns out it sells out rather quickly, so I had to wait to get my hands on some. Of course, having yards of fabric mailed over from the US is not a cheap process, so to begin with I bought just enough for two dresses (or so I thought).

I took my time deciding what to do with it - I almost couldn't bare to cut it! But then I came across some artificial hydrangea flowers when out browsing a craft store one day, and I had a 'Eureka!' moment. I knew what I had to do. And I had the perfect olive vintage taffeta with which to pair the lush hydrangea and raspberry print cotton.

So, it's a high-waisted 8-gore skirt attached to a sweetheart-shaped bodice, with matching bolero. The tiny jacket is rather structured and square shouldered, giving a small nod to the 1940s shoulder-line rather than the typical, more rounded shoulder of a 1950s bolero. The skirt has a 141" hem sweep - so it turned out I only had enough to make one dress after all! So, thus far, it's OOAK (one of a kind), in a size ML. It's available in my etsy store! More pics below.


veronica darling said...

What a great dress!

I actually love the back the best, as I've never seen that pleating before! Where is the zipper?

Absolutely love your ideas, and I know what you mean not wanting to cut beautiful fabric! Most of mine is vintage but not expensive at all, and I take ages saying to myself "Are you SURE this will look good?"


Jennifer said...

That is such a beautiful dress!

Maisy Brown said...

Thank you so much, veronica and jennifer!
Veronica, the (invisible) zip is centre back; the 'pleating' effect you see is created by the narrow gores of the skirt and repetition of the print, it's not really pleated, but is a visual illusion.
I'm so pleased with this one!!
And re gtting up the courage to cut precious vintage's torture! lol

Michelle Brunner said...

This is AMAZING! I love hydrangea flowers also...they are one of my favorites, especially when they are blue! I love your pictures as well with the dress next to the actual hydrangea bushes! You are so lucky to have warm enough weather to do so:) Right now where I live we have a foot of snow:(

Thanks for your feedback on my blog, I value your comments:)

Maisy Brown said...

Michelle - thank you! Would you believe I'm actually jealous of YOUR weather? I love hydrangeas - don't love the heat!
And you're very welcome - your blog is top notch!

veronica darling said...

Hey... I thought about your post... I'd love to do a 30 garment 30 day thing... I'll think of a puntastic name (a fantastic quirky title with a pun in it ... you know for sewing) but do you have a month in mind?

A shorter month to try out would be February of course!

Chrisy said...

and how does it look on your mauve blog page! usual you've created another work of art...a person could just put it on a dummy and use it as an art piece!

BeckyKay said...

That is fantastic! Maisy you never fail to amaze me! :)

Haute Country Vintage Co. said...

Another stellar creation, loove it! And your blog too, can't wait to see what fabulousness you come up with next. You've got a blog award! Stop by my blog to pick it up :)

Anonymous said...

So lovely
I'm coming back to your place again and again - you make gorgeous things :)


Jill Smith said...

I have just found your blog from another blog and am so glad l did as your dresses and ideas are a work of art.
I used to have a flower shop before l got back to painting again and if you want to keep some hyrangea's for ever just tie a bunch up into a posy shape and cut stems on a slant and tie them up as high as you can somwhere to dry them out. They will go a bit paler but still beautiful and you can put them in a vase for ever.

Maisy Brown said...

Thank you so much, Jill and Saida!

kathy glassman said...

Can you tell me where you purcased the fabric ? you can reply to