And now for something different.. Vogue 1174 completed!

I’m pausing the Me-Made-May coverage to share my completed version of Vogue 1174. Although, I did wear it, so it’s a Me-Made-May story as well. I’m happy I finally completed this behemoth of a dress. (Is that the right word? It seems fitting for this labour-intensive project…) So, without further delay, here it is!

I wore it to work, JUST so I could share pics with you! Wasn’t that nice of me?
It was no problem until the end of the workday. I was only a bit surprised to find out you cannot take a full, deep breath in this dress. By about 5pm I was starting to feel mildly uncomfortable and really wanted to take in a lungful of air. The dress said, no way!
Also important to note – you cannot eat a big meal in this dress either, like I could in this one. On the day I wore the dress, I had a lovely lunch out with my guy. He dropped by the office and took me out for Taco Del Mar (yum!).
It was absolutely delicious but an hour later, I started to think maybe it was not such a good idea. Let me tell you, the corset-like foundation really does its job, both keeping the dress up (yay!) and holding me in (after a big enchilada platter, not so fun…)
By the time I got home from work, I was DYING to take this dress off. I know, it’s not very ladylike of me to admit but I feel like I can tell you, readers, so you’re not surprised. I felt like Scarlett O’Hara, no wonder ladies were fainting all the time in the days of corsets! Ah, the things we do to look good.
Here’s a close-up view:
If you disregard the restricted breathing, this dress looks adorable. I felt pretty cute in it, and also kind of flirty since it was strapless. (I did wear a wrap sweater over the dress, so it wasn’t too revealing for the office. See? Though it’s much better without the sweater.)
While I was doing my photo shoot in the industrial park, go figure the landscapers and roofers were already hard at work near my planned photoshoot location. They sure had a chuckle at me, setting my self-timer and running into position. I suppose you don’t see a smart car with a tripod on the tailgate and a girl taking self-photos in a strapless dress every day. That’s some early-morning free entertainment.
And it definitely didn’t fall down, that’s for sure! I could move around easily, although standing was much more comfortable than sitting. I sat all day in front of my office computer with minimal discomfort.
After checking out my pics on my laptop, I’ve decided that strapless dresses need to enjoy being strapless. Covering them up with sweaters and wraps is OK, to make the look work-appropriate, but ruins the dramatic effect. It’s all about the shoulders!
That’s how I felt anyways, perhaps others have a different opinion. For me, my chest is practically non-existent in this dress, so the focus needs to be on the shoulders and collarbone for maximum impact.
Here’s the original pattern photo, pretty close don’t you think? I prefer the contrasting piping on my version as it really stands out, but I love the red-and-white floral of the model’s dress.
Would I make Vogue 1174 again? You know what, I probably would. I feel like the end result was totally worth the time it took making the dress. Plus, I’ve already done the hard part, making the muslin (yes, I did make one!) and perfecting the fit. Even though I’m not the biggest fan of making a muslin, I’m too impatient normally, but I had a feeling this one would need it. I ended up cutting two sizes smaller on the top than the bottom, ah the curse of the pear shaped figure!
I was hesitant to make a strapless dress in general, since I’m so much smaller on top than on the bottom and was concerned it wouldn’t stay up. The built-in foundation with boning and waist stay help keep it securely in place. Plus even though I’m small-busted, it’s still quite flattering. So yes, I’d make this one again. I’m leaning towards a nautical-inspired cotton print, something a little more casual and playful.
If you have any questions on Vogue 1174, ask away!

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37 Responses to And now for something different.. Vogue 1174 completed!

  1. Erica B. May 19, 2010 at 6:32 am #

    I think it turned out lovely and you look great in it!

  2. Stacy May 19, 2010 at 7:16 am #

    Gorgeous! The piping is a wonderful touch, and I love the print. It looks kind of blurry, like you’re in motion. :)

  3. Gertie May 19, 2010 at 7:31 am #

    Oh my gosh, it’s fantastic! What a beautiful job you did. I know that Scarlett O’ Hara feeling well . . . I hope you changed into some nice comfy sweatpants or somthing!

  4. Trisha May 19, 2010 at 8:21 am #

    Lovely! You did a great job on this dress. It looks like you picked it up at Barney’s.

  5. Ms.Cleaver May 19, 2010 at 8:22 am #

    It turned out lovely – I can only imagine what a learning experience that construction must have been.

    The dress is absolutely gorgeous, but having owned a “better for standing” dress or two in my day I’m not sure I’d run out and make it myself. Unless perhaps I added straps and didn’t do the boning, but it wouldn’t quite me the same…

    All that to say, I’m very impressed with your work!!

  6. Jaime May 19, 2010 at 8:57 am #

    I love the mental image of the construction workers watching you snap photos of yourself and mumbling, “What the…?” LOL. Beautiful work on the dress – thanks so much for sharing!

  7. Tasia May 19, 2010 at 9:11 am #

    Thank you thank you everyone for all the lovely comments!
    Gertie, I totally put on sweatpants the moment I got home :) a girl can only wear a corset for so long!

  8. Monet May 19, 2010 at 10:02 am #

    I have so many questions…but I think I am going to have to e-mail them to you :)

    It turned out perfectly, though. I am so proud of you and I hope you are proud of yourself!

  9. Susan Davis - Knitters Delight May 19, 2010 at 10:45 am #

    I ordered horsehair boning from to make this one up. You look stunning in your version….The wrap sweater looks really cute, but you are right – the dramatic look is showing off the shoulders.

  10. Jessica May 19, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    Oh, it is so pretty! I love the fabric, and you did a great job fitting the bodice! I don’t like dresses that fit too tight around my ribcage either – a girl’s gotta breathe! Now you have to find someplace to wear it without the sweater and show it off!

  11. Clare May 19, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    another gorgeous dress – am soooo jealous of this one, well done! it’s beautifully made and looks stunning on. I really like the way it can be made to work as a day dress; you could wear a plain shirt over the top too and only you would know there was an elegant strapless extravaganza going on underneath!

  12. Tasia May 19, 2010 at 12:14 pm #

    Thanks to everyone else who added their lovely thoughts!
    Monet, email me any time and I’ll answer your questions. Hopefully I can help!
    Jessica, you’re right, this dress deserves a real date night, I’ll be sure to suggest it to my guy. Just not a big dinner!

  13. Stefani Sarah May 19, 2010 at 4:24 pm #

    Oh my… best version I’ve seen so far.

  14. Rachel May 19, 2010 at 4:38 pm #

    I’ve just discovered your blog, and adore everything you’ve made. This dress, the statement coat, the dress with the keyhole back…. everything!

  15. Adey May 19, 2010 at 5:10 pm #

    The dress looks divine on you! What a great fabric choice too!

  16. ~Sherry~ May 19, 2010 at 6:23 pm #

    It looks gorgeous and fits great! Love your idea of a nautical inspired one too!

  17. Angela May 19, 2010 at 9:55 pm #

    It looks fabulous on you!! Great job!

  18. Suzie May 20, 2010 at 1:41 am #

    I was so excited to see that today was the unveiling of the finished dress – and it’s gorgeous!!!! Well done, all that hard work was definately worth it. YOu are a very skilled seamstress and very inspirational!

    Keep up the blog – I love it! :)

  19. Nadia May 20, 2010 at 3:35 pm #

    Tasia you have such a beautiful smile! I love the dress on you – being the same size/shape, I can definitely relate to the strapless-dress anxiety, but you pulled it off SO well.
    Great work!

  20. senaSews May 21, 2010 at 1:49 am #

    The dress is gorgeous. Love the fabric and the white piping. Just adorable!

  21. Fourth Daughter May 26, 2010 at 5:50 am #

    Such a cute dress, and I much prefer the pattern you have used to the original red and white one. And very brave of you to shoot with an audience!! I always stick to my backyard where the only audience is my dog!

  22. SewBissy May 27, 2010 at 10:52 am #

    Beautiful dress! I love that fabric. I find the idea of inserting boning to be so intimidating–way to go doing that! Looks great on you. (And I’m secretly glad I’m not the only one who can feel a little clothes-constricted after a satisfying meal.)

  23. LaToya July 3, 2010 at 8:45 pm #

    I love your choice of fabric. I’m in the process of constructing this same dress on my blog at I can’t wait to see the finished project!

  24. Spikeabell July 5, 2010 at 6:45 pm #

    mmm I think i’m going to have to do this one..good job! What kind of underpinning does it have? more than boning? i’ll go check out the pattern details

  25. Eleanor July 6, 2010 at 6:45 pm #

    Oh Tasia, that is lovely! And I love your fabric choice. I’m scared of making this dress for a variety of reasons, but I’m all about facing my fears and jumping right in. And my wish came true! In my post I asked for a reason to make this dress to happen and BAM! A good friend of mine got engaged this weekend! I’m going to spend the next week or so looking at fabric and where to get all the notions needed. I may have to take you up on that offer about asking some quetions, haha. We shall see!!!

  26. Tasia July 6, 2010 at 9:55 pm #

    @Eleanor: Thanks and of course you can ask me questions about the dress! I show the inside of the dress in another post, but don’t go into too much detail on how it’s made. So glad you have an occasion coming up to wear the dress!

  27. Selina July 19, 2010 at 11:07 am #

    I bought this pattern when Vogue had their 2.99 sale? I think that’s what it was, lol. Anyways, I’m glad you made a version of it, so we all know it stays up!! Also, I may have to steal your idea of making it in a nautical print as I have some in my stash…
    It’s also nice to see a Vancouverite with a vintage/sewing blog!

  28. Tasia July 19, 2010 at 12:14 pm #

    @Selina: Hi Selina, thanks for stopping by! It does stay up, in fact, it will never fall down, ever, it’s so intensely snug. And I’m not the slightest bit busty either, probably someone with a more generous chest would be even more secure. A nautical dress would be so lovely, if you make it I’d love to see your version!

  29. sulovessew August 13, 2010 at 9:42 am #

    HiTasia, I had some Ikat fabric that i purchased in Bali and am thinking it will be perfect for this pattern, somewhat similar to what you have. My only concern is that the pattern suggests using brocade, whichi s a heavier fabric. Ikat is a little lighter. Since yours looks so gorgeous and doesn’t look like a heavy fabric, I’d like to get your perspective on using a lighter fabric. thanks

  30. Tasia August 24, 2010 at 9:10 am #

    @sulovessew: You could totally use a lighter weight fabric.. as long as it’s not too light. The fabric I used is a textured polyester print, it’s lighter than brocade but heavier than say, a shirting or blouse fabric. One thing to consider is the foundation/corset that’s underneath the dress. If the fabric is too light there’s a chance the underpinnings will show through. A lighter fabric will have more drape in the skirt, like my version, which I liked. I think you’ll be fine with the Ikat fabric! Good luck :)

  31. Em February 15, 2011 at 2:19 am #

    I bought this pattern for my DT major work for yr 12 without really thinking it through (it will only end up being half of my project) because the pattern photo looked so pretty…
    I was just wondering, how long approximately did it take you to make?
    Thanks :))

  32. Tasia February 15, 2011 at 1:22 pm #

    @Em: Hi Em! Well, it all depends on how much time you spend sewing. I believe I worked on it over a couple of weeks, in evenings and on the weekends. Maybe a month, of sewing most evenings and weekends? I tend to work on a few projects at once so I know it wasn’t a full solid month of just sewing this dress – and I did make a muslin first to make sure the fit was going to work. Hope that helps! :)

  33. charity November 27, 2012 at 10:36 am #

    It looks great! I am sewing the dress for a friend and I can’t figure out where the French tack goes. Can you help with that? Thanks!

  34. Alex June 24, 2013 at 9:12 pm #

    Wow the dress looks so great, just wondering do you think the dress would look funny without the piping? I’m thinking of using just the top for a dress I’m making :)

    • Tasia June 26, 2013 at 10:00 am #

      I think it would look okay, but the piping is really want makes the design stand out. If you use a print then you’ll have a whole bunch of seams where the prints are cut in half, you know?
      I made this same dress using lace in the seams instead of piping –


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