The Commencement Means Beginning Dress

Graduations are awfully strange affairs. After an intense education experience, a glorious glass bubble of learning and work and effort and delight (I…love school….) the bubble suddenly pops from a champagne cork right through the heart of the glass, covering you and people who apparently went to school with you although they are perfect strangers, with painful shards while relatives snap photos and you sweat in polyester robes. Or, more simply put, the experience of graduation never seems to have anything to do with the experience of education. They just don’t seem to relate in any way, normally. My undergraduate graduation was a three-day affair of strange traditions ripped from early Anglophilic American settlers who were too good for/not good enough for British universities. But, I got to meet this dog! 4711_572279200734_400281_n

So it was kind of the best day ever. God, I miss him. I MISS HIM SO MUCH! But honestly, as interesting as it all was, my graduation, it literally had nothing to do with my day-to-day college life. Which, maybe it shouldn’t. Maybe graduations are so different because they mark a new chapter of life. However, my most recent commencement, from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, was a disasterously disorganized affair. Which…actually is exactly reflective of my Art School experience. Wow! Look at that. Well, I mean, come on, do you really trust creative people to plan anything? Like an administration? Though you would think that given that this was basically a production, they would have figured it out more….but whatever. Martin Scorsese waved his little Italian hands at us and described his recent dreams. Undergraduates did a medley from Ragtime. I nearly strangled myself with my brown velvet masters hood. It was pretty special. No dogs, though….

But I made THIS dress, unlike last time! What a difference 5 years makes…

CMB4.jpgAnd obviously, I went on theme. NYU’s school color is a deep violet. I just HAPPENED to have this in my stash from my exchange with the lovely and talented Amity of Lolita Patterns, and I thought, well, let’s do this thing. What’s-his-face’s father asked me if I was still wearing my robes, so I like to think I succeeded!

CMB7.jpgThe pattern is By Hand London’s Elisalex pattern. After the last time I made it I was itching to try it again. I want to make more, but I think I need to adjust the bust and arms. It fits beautifully everywhere but in the bust, where I feel like I’m wearing a corset. And a breast binding. And armor. Breathing became a challenge. CMD2.jpgEh, what can you do. I still love this dress and will wear it again. And breathe lightly.

CMB5.jpgThe back is just so good. I love it.

CMB8.jpgFor the skirt, I just gathered two rectangles. I wanted it to be really full and I wasn’t disappointed. This pattern is really quite easy to put together, honestly, especially because I’ve done it before. I like princess seams, they are flattering and nice and I think they will be easy to adjust. 1500.jpg

The bodice came out a little short. It looked okay, and it looks fine here, but I would also lengthen the bodice pieces next time, because the empire look isn’t a good one on me.

CMB6.jpgThat lovely gold necklace was a gift. The pearl one came from pearls my friend Lisa got me in China. My neck was overflowing with love! I lined the bodice with white fabric but left the skirt unlined, which shocked my roommate Emily, who took the photos. I figured the gathering would take care of it, and hey, man, it totally did.

CMB9.jpgTake a look at the eyelet! Amity has splendid taste. So cute, right?

CMB10.jpgI used it for the skirt as well. Eyelet makes everything easier, I tell you, no hemming!

CMB1.jpgOne final full body shot. You can totally see the shadow of Emily haunting these photos. Thanks, Emily!

Massive massive congratulations to the NYU Class of 2014, and to all graduates! You guys better have themed your outfits, too. Come on, get into it! It’s fun!

Now that school is over, let’s see if my clothing production and blog output resumes its normal pace, shall we? Of course, I’m looking for a job in writing, so, you know, I might just be having daily nervous breakdowns instead. Who can say?

In other news, I’m selling vintage patterns in my Etsy shop! Check them out here:

StruggleSews

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6 Comments

Filed under By Hand London, Sewing

6 responses to “The Commencement Means Beginning Dress

  1. MEGA CONGRATULATIONS! What an accomplishment! Success is always the very best reason for sewing a new dress and yours is freaking gorgeous. Violet is such a great color on you! Love it.

  2. Beautiful fabric, beautiful dress! Congratulations!

  3. That color looks gorgeous on you!! I should have picked some purple up for myself 🙂

  4. Judi

    Congratulations!!! Your dress is beautiful.

  5. Congratulations!!!!!!!!

  6. Congratulations!!!

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