Presently Preferring Pucci

Once I get into a project, especially one that has some complicated decisions or construction to it, I tend to think about it during many of my non-sewing hours. (I wonder if other sewers/dressmakers do that?) Now that I have finished my Pucci dress, I’ll be spending both sewing and non-sewing hours on the jacket.

First, however, some details about the dress are in order.

The dress is finished!

The dress is finished!

There are a few design aspects of this dress which set it apart from a simple A-line or sheath dress.  Notable to me is the effect that the curved front yoke makes on the bustline. It gives it more definition than it would have with just darts.

If you look closely, you can see the yoke seam.

If you look closely, you can see the yoke seam.

The back yoke adds some “surprise” interest by being split in the middle. In addition, the back of the dress would not be quite so clean looking if the zipper were placed in the center back below the yoke. Its location on the side seam is one of those hallmarks of a carefully planned Designer pattern.

The "open" yoke on the back of the dress.

The “open” yoke on the back of the dress.

I made some changes to the dress, based on the muslin. My six alterations are:

1) I decided to incorporate curved armholes into the two back yoke sections. On a younger person, the more revealing back arm would be fine, but I was not so comfortable with it!  Please see the photo above.

2) I took out some of the A-line from the dress. I wouldn’t say I actually “pegged” it, as I left a slight taper, but the effect is now one of a straighter skirt, which I think is a bit more “current.”

A sdie view shows this alteration best.

A side view shows this alteration best.

3) Taking out some of the taper meant I had to give myself a bit more ease in the skirt, so I left a slit at the center back.

The center back slit at the hem line.

The center back slit at the hem line.

4) I added two small darts to the back sides at the waist, which adds some definition to it.

5) I lowered the neckline to accommodate a particular necklace that I want to wear with this outfit. Isn’t it just lovely that sewing allows us the ability to make these kind of custom alterations?

6) The pattern called for a hook and eye at the center back neck. I decided to add a loop and small button instead, although I added an interior hook and eye to help the back neck lay flat.  Adding this button and loop can definitely be called a “dressmaker detail”.

The button is one I have had in my button box for decades!  Its faceted surface seemed perfect for this dress.

The button is one I have had in my button box for decades! Its faceted surface seemed perfect for this dress.

Of course I underlined the dress with silk organza.

Preferring Pucci

This back view also shows the extended armhole line.

This back view also shows the extended armhole line.

And this side view shows how the front yoke adds definition to the bustline.

And this side view shows how the front yoke adds definition to the bustline.

Then I lined the dress in black crepe de chine, and under-stitched the neckline and armhole seams with turquoise silk buttonhole twist, just for fun.

The dress turned inside out.

The dress turned inside out.

Under-stitchibng in turquoise. No one will ever see it, but I love what it adds!

Under-stitching in turquoise. No one will ever see it, but I love what it adds!  Click on the photo for a close-up view.

So – that’s it!

Now here’s a phenomenon that seems to happen to me frequently. I’ll be using a mid-century designer pattern for a project, and I’ll come across a current magazine or newspaper article, which in one way or another relates to what I am sewing or planning to sew. So it was this past weekend, when I was catching up with reading the April WSJ. The Wall Street Journal Magazine, delivered the weekend before. Right there on page 84 was an article on Laudomia Pucci, Emilio’s daughter, entitled: Fortress of Fashion. It is a fascinating account of her commitment to preserve the “fashion legacy” of her father, by reinventing an ancestral estate in Tuscany into an accessible-and-preservation-minded archives. On view are fabrics and fashions, and “already Pucci has hosted several educational events… Two groups of students … have come to study sewing and print design…[would not this be wonderful?! – my addition].  Laudomia is hoping to extend the educational activities to international fashion schools for longer visits.”   Her goal is to encourage the “next generation … to find inspiration for innovative fashion.” Now this is a place where a Preference for Pucci is definitely a way of life!



Filed under Buttons - choosing the right ones, couture construction, Dressmaker details, sewing in silk, side-placed zippers, Uncategorized, underlinings, vintage Vogue Designer patterns, vintage Vogue patterns from the 1960s, Vogue patterns

26 responses to “Presently Preferring Pucci

  1. The dress looks fabulous, and I love the way the slit at the back hem echoes the opening in the back bodice.

  2. “I wonder if other sewers/dressmakers do that?” – The answer is YES! A project involving some engineering will often keep me awake at night!

    Beautiful details on your dress! I especially love how you matched the print at the center front curve of the yoke.

  3. Cissie

    Karen, that dress is simply phenomenal. Your attention to detail is truly inspiring. I could finally see the front yoke, but your matching was so perfect that it was hard! Love all of your changes and your turquoise understitching. Just gorgeous. Can’t wait to see the jacket. BTW, I know what you mean about thinking about a project whether actually sewing or not. I’ve dreamed about projects before and come up with solutions in the middle of the night!

  4. Your dress is absolutely magnificent. Your choice of fabric couldn’t be more perfect. You will have a stunning outfit when the jacket is complete. I can’t wait to see the jacket. I am so in love with this pattern. I have put in a bid for one on Ebay. Thank you for all the inspiration your blogs gives to fellow sewers like me.

    • I really hope you are the successful bidder on that pattern! I’m so happy I have helped to inspire you – it’s comments like yours that inspire me! Thank you! (And good luck!)

  5. Kat

    That dress is simply wonderful. I just adore that back!!! Will bookmark for future inspiration! Thank frig I’m not the only one that thinks about my sewing challenges in my off hours (read: all the time) 🙂

  6. Fabulous work and wonderful results. The fabric is stunning – so vibrant. I love that you have underlined and lined the dress – it will feel luxurious to wear and hangs beautifully. My non sewing hours are frequently interrupted by random and not so random sewing thoughts – even, I have to confess, my work hours. I love it that all sewers seem to have this little obsession. Makes life much more fun.

    • I agree – life is much more fun with minds full of fabrics, patterns, fashion, and sewing. So glad you like the fabric – I love it more and more all the time! Thanks so much for your interesting and delightful comment!

  7. Joanne

    Love the back. Please show a pic of you wearing.
    Another beauty!

    • Hi Joanne! I will show a picture of me in the dress once I get the jacket completed. Delighted that you like the dress! Always wonderful to hear from you. (BTW – How was your trip to Britex?)

  8. It has never occurred to me to use a different color for understitching — or to do it by hand. But wow — that looks so great! I can’t wait to give it a try!

  9. You really are a master at matching. Thanks for walking through your alterations. It’s good to see the process.

  10. Thanks, Lizzie! I love the process of sewing, as you can tell! Great to hear from you, as usual!

  11. Great job! I love your rendition. I believe you’ve inspired me to go on the hunt for another Pucci pattern. Love it! Glad I happened across your blog.

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  13. Oh it’s a beauty! Your pattern matching on that yoke is so good it took me a while to actually be able to find the yoke. And that subtle peep slit at the back yoke – divine.
    And nope, you’re not the only one – my spare moments during waking hours are always spent daydreaming about the fabric, the pattern and how I’m going to bring them both together.
    I think you may have just inspired a collective online hunt for vintage Pucci patterns… they really are lovely!

  14. I, for one, am always on the hunt for more Pucci! I think we are in good company with our daydreams about sewing – and it’s comforting to know I am not the only one who indulges in these constant musings!

  15. Gosh this is a lovely dress and I love the idea of the hidden understitching that only you know is there in vibrant turquoise. Lovely – like the hand stitching on your blocked coat but more secret.

    I’m gonna skip forward to see how the jacket came together with those sleeves ….. 🙂

  16. Pingback: Vogue 7133 – 1967 Kimono-sleeved jacket | Fabrickated

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