Monday, October 6, 2008
Everybody's Favorite Claire McCardell
I am a dress beta tester! Yes indeed, the fine Xandra at Evadress asked me to give her newest dress, set to launch in November, a trial run in muslin. I am excited. Actually, that is an understatement. I am honored and a bit overwhelmed at being ask to participate, however minimally, in the relaunching of such an amazing dress design. The dress... well, it is none other than "everybody's favorite Claire McCardell" as Xandra puts it. And I can see why it is everbody's favorite. First, the style is immaculate. The dress is simple and clean with bold details. The silhouette is immensely flattering with a defined waist, deep v neckline, and that great bustle of a bow in the back. And that wrap around sash, well what can I say, that sash is to die for. It simultaneously creates a waist illusion on a figure like mine, and hides any pouch or purge in the mid region.
Plus, Xandra has graded the pattern into multiple sizes! I am going to sew the largest, a bust size 46", but I believe it goes down into the wee sizes of the lower 30's as well. This is great news allowing for an easier customized fit on this great design. If you are small on top and larger on bottom, it will be a snap to make the dress in two sizes, already graded for your shape and needs in each area. I just feel such a gratitude for the many entrepreneurs out there like EvaDress and Decades of Style who take the initiative to open up design for some many shapes and sizes.
This opportunity is really my first introduction to the great designer Claire McCardell. McCardell, according to many, was the LEADING force behind America's ready-to-wear fashion industry in the 1940's and 1950's. I cannot believe I did not know who she was, given the amount of ready to wear I consume, and given my newfound passion for vintage dresses. She designed clothing that was at the same time functional and fashionable, durable yet stylish, and she designed it all to excel within the confines of the mass produced market. She was amazing.
Her work led the way in releasing America's fashion aesthetic from French dominance. Forget freedom fries here, we are talking about freedom FASHION. Bah humbug to the French couture (Just kidding, but in these times of politics I can't help but assert my patriotic spirit sometimes)!
I am cutting the fabric tomorrow, and will begin sewing as soon as my machine is out of the shop. Stay tuned, because construction on my favorite Claire McCardell pattern is about to be revealed on this blog, and the pattern is sure to become your favorite too! It is one of DressADay's favorites too, see!