Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Birthday Dress 2009, Drape Drape #5

Well, my birthday was a long time ago now (August 31). I was working like crazy at the time (and in fact had to travel for work on my actual birthday) but I made time for a birthday dress!

Drape Drape #5 Thumbnail

You may recall that I had a lust for avocado jersey when I went to NYC in June. I didn't find any, but Elizabeth (eword10), with whom we met up for shopping, had my back and when she found some avocado silk jersey for $5.99/yd she snapped it up for me! I was so excited.

Drape Drape Dress #5When I went to Japan, of course I had to check out the sewing books and absolutely fell in love with Drape Drape. It has a lot of cool very Japanese designs that are conceptual and intellectual more than they are sexy, for the most part. Drape Drape Dress #5 is an exception with its very low cut front and back. The text is entirely in Japanese (although the numerals are Arabic, thank goodness). I am guessing this is intended to be made in a woven, judging by the zipper, but I thought it would look fab in a knit.

Pattern Sheet with Lines MarkedUnlike Stylebook, Drape Drape comes with a full set of patterns, each in four sizes. I traced a Small, which has a bust of about 30.5 inches; the waist is 23 inches and the hip is 33 inches--sizes I haven't been since approximately middle school--but because it is an empire line with a ton of ease at the waist/hip it didn't matter. If you think Patrones pattern sheets are confusing though, ugh, wait until you see this. All the designs on a pattern sheet are printed in the same color. This is frustrating because the design sheets are printed in green on one side and black on the other, so it's not that they saved money by printing only in one color! It took me a good hour just to find all of my lines, which I marked in purple pencil so that I could find them with the tissue paper over it. Intellectual, drapey designs take up a *lot* of fabric. I couldn't quite fit the skirt piece onto my yardage so I had to narrow it a few inches from the way it was drafted, and shorten it a few inches as well. Luckily, the design didn't suffer.

Back CloseupIt was very interesting to sew. Although the directions are in Japanese, it was easy to figure out which piece was which and there are a few diagrams to help you put them together. Some of the less intuitive pieces in the book are beyond me, because I can't even figure out which pieces go where, but this one was easy.

I have been loving the look of the side skirt drape for some time, as in the Cynthia Steffe Paige Dress, DKNYC Cascading Ruffles Dress, and DVF Epana Dress I posted about back in June, and was so excited to find out how it's done. I cut it out, marked the pleats, sewed the pleats and was still entirely mystified until I was like, "Wait a minute, are they blowing my mind? Yes, they are. There is no side seam, the seams are in the front and the back." That doesn't sound so mind blowing written down but seriously, it blew my mind. Having made it, I love the draping even more; I am going to have to figure out how to make a skirt out of this pattern.

Grand Entrance Back I feel like I should have more to say, but really, it went together pretty easily and I loooooove it. I felt so sexy and sophisticated on my birthday in this dress.

This is another of the looks that Cidell photographed for me, so there are a ton of great photos! The pattern review is here.

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Unfortunately, the only source I have found for this book is amazon.co.jp. I just impulsively ordered a hat book from amazon.jp, so I can offer my experience.

amazon.co.jpFirst, go to the website and look way up in the right hand corner. There is a little "In English" link. You can find the book by searching "Drape Drape." The book itself is very reasonable--around $18 USD. Shipping is an eye-popping $35, however. It comes FedEx. I have not yet received my book, and won't for several days because I assumed they would send through the post office and had the book sent to my house. Alas, I cannot receive FedEx at my house so I had to contact amazon.jp (they offer customer service in English) and ask them to change the delivery address and heaven knows if I will ever actually receive the book. But had I not gone through this rigamarole I think it would have arrived very quickly. So you get good service for your $35, but it's a little painful (and I wish I'd done the research to order a couple more books to make the shipping worth it).

**EDIT TO ADD** Thank you to all the commenters who had helpful suggestions for finding this book!

It appears to be available on Yes Asia for $29.49 with free shipping.

Marie-Christine recommends this eBay store for Japanese books.

Megan recommends eBay and Etsy seller pomadour24 for Japanese books.

77 comments:

Trudy said...

You look smashing in this dress, like you should be on the cover of a magazine!

senaSews said...

I love, love, love this dress! The drape is gorgeous and the color is perfect for you! Did i say that i love this dress?!

Kathy said...

This dress is Stunning. Perfect color for you too.
Kathy

Leslie said...

This looks amazing on you and I love the color!

NGLaLALa said...

Lovely dress!! It looks amazing on you!

Adrienne said...

AMAZING! I love it!

Houkje said...

That dress is absolutely stunning, and how interesting that it has no side seams! You look fab in it.

Sewfast said...

Wow! You are one hot Mama in that dress! Great job!!!

Marie-Christine said...

Wow. Just wow. And I'd kill for some of that fabric.
But there's another excellent source for Japanese books: http://stores.shop.ebay.com/Simply-Pretty-Japanese-Beads-Books__W0QQ_armrsZ1 very good previews, free shipping worldwide, and it arrives lickity-split.

Elizabeth said...

That color is gorgeous on you! What a beautiful dress, and the fit is fab!
I bought a few of the Japanese sewing books not too long ago, but since they are cut so tiny, they were going to be for my daughter. They seem to be a bit confusing, but I really want to tackle one of them some day.

paco peralta said...

Trena, este vestido es "espectacular" y te queda divino, de veras. Me encanta ese color.

Uta said...

The dress, and you, look absulutely stunning! I hope you wore it somewhere spectacular!

Lisette M said...

With your styling you look like a 1930s movie star. Just gorgeous!

RiAnge Creations. Ltd. said...

Wow! Please wrap and package the dress carefully and ship to my home. LOL. Fantastic job.
Angela

Cindy said...

Happy Belated Birthday. You look amazing! quite the sexy number!

Megan said...

Great dress! I have been stalking Drape Drape, and have found a copy at yesasia.com (free shipping over $50) and pomadour24 sells this and other Japanese pattern books on etsy and ebay. I look forward to seeing more of your draped creations. Thanks for the inspiration :)

Kim Hood said...

That dress is FABULOUS! I am inspired and plan to check out the japanese pattern books ASAP. I very much doubt I will look as good as you do in that dress. Hope you have many occasions to walk it out.

lsaspacey said...

That dress is beyond amazing!!

It reminds me of designs from the early 1910 and 20's. Also the designers, Vionnet, Madame Gres, Poiret, and Mainbocher. It is so super flattering on you too. I now want one too!

Rachel said...

That dress is simply to die for!!!! You look awesome in it and it really complements your red hair. I have never heard of Drape Drape. I will definitely check it out.

Lina said...

Beautiful dress, looks brilliant on you.
Green is definitely your color.

Mpressive Threadz said...

That is a great birthday dress and you look fabulous!

Myra said...

That is fabulous, like a Grecian goddess look. Try to go with that style for you, maybe even adding sleeves. Very much in proportion for you.

Cisa said...

Oh wow! I want Drape Drape just for this dress. Stunning! And what a great color on you

Birgitte said...

Stunning! You look like a Grecian Goddess.

Lakaribane said...

I second what Megan said re: buying on YesAsia.com.

Look here:

http://www.yesasia.com/us/dress-up-dress-down-simple-chic-with-paper-pattern/1003445494-0-0-0-en/info.html

I bought the book I'm using right now, Simple Chic by Machiko Kayaki and since I had splurged last Nov on several title, the shipping to the US was free. Fast, Safe and Efficient, so far.

And that dress is a Real Birthday Dress. I have that tradition too!

LaKaribane said...

Sorry about that. Meant this link:

http://www.yesasia.com/us/drape-drape/1020515716-0-0-0-en/info.html

And about the FIS:

http://www.yesasia.com/us/customer-support/0-0-0-hti.1576-en/question-answer.html

In fact, I see that the FIS qualification is only $39 which means that two or three sewing books and you are there!!!

Dharma said...

That is a WOW dress!!! Stunning!

Lori said...

Happy Birthday a bit late and you look amazing in your dress.

June said...

Happy belated birthday! The dress is stunning! I love it.

Adelaide B said...

I think "hubba hubba" is the phrase I am looking for.

Nancy K said...

It's pretty spectacular! I hope that you went to a suitable venue to do this dress justice!

Venus de Hilo said...

What a gorgeous dress! It's stunning and a great color/shape on you.

BTW, I can also recommend "pomadour24" at Etsy as a Japanese pattern book source. I just wish I weren't so un-Japanese in height and shape; the redrafting required to achieve anything close to a fit for me is even more headache inducing than tracing from those pattern sheets.

yaiAnn said...

OMG! That dress is BEYOND fabulous!! It's downright stunning and I think it's great in a knit! Wow, just WOW!

Lindsay T said...

Wow, so sexy! This dress almost makes me want to sew knits again. Nice job!

amber said...

So beautiful!!

McVal said...

Gorgeous dress!

Maja said...

Gorgeous! I love this dress. I ordered this book a few days ago and am waiting to receive it. I can't wait to get it now.

Sigrid said...

Fabulous dress, it's wonderful: the drape, the color on you, the way you look in it and the style in general. Love how you work with these Japanese books. Great result.

Carol said...

Gorgeous colour, gorgeous dress! You look stunning!

Little Hunting Creek said...

WOW - the dress and the fabric are amazing on you. It is beautiful

lasandrou said...

The dress is wonderful !!! I love the color and the pleats ! May I suggest you to post it on the french blog Japan Couture Addict : http://japancouture.canalblog.com/archives/livre_240/index.html ?

Sew4Fun said...

Wow! Talk about knock me over. You look amazing in this dress. It's sexy and alluring in a beautiful way. What I like most is the dress isn't wearing you. It compliments, bringing out all your beauty without being overpowering.

marysews said...

What a stunning dress, and the color is perfect for you!

Claudine said...

WOW! That is the coolest dress I've seen in a long time!

Sue said...

Sexy dress, great colour - you look great!

AllisonC said...

My goodness that is freaking fabulous!!!

laura said...

One Hot Dress! Wow!

Sharon said...

Wow! What a fabulous dress!

Gail said...

well the people have spoken. This is a sensational dress. I'd love to make it for my DD, and I reckon that the pattern would also work as a skirt.

Vicki said...

WOW!!! You look fabulous. Everything about the dress suits you so well. Quite unique and perfect for a birthday dress.

Christina said...

Smoking hot! Wear this when you want to guarantee yourself a subsequent date with a guy.

I just bought this book (at Kinokuniya, a Japanese bookstore, by special order). All of the patterns are fabulous, aren't they? I'm glad to see yours turned out so good in real life...

Brenda said...

Gorgeous!! LOVE it. You look great. And, happy belated birthday.

equatorcollection said...

Happy Belated Birthday! You look divine in that dress. I am used to Stylebook but am very hesitant about attempting Japanese paper patterns. The way yours has turned out, from what looks like an amazing book, is making me think again.

kiltsnquilts said...

I agree, WOW, stunning, amazing! Great dress and great colour!

toy said...

you have a true one of a kind, this is fantastic, and the color is suberb with your hair color

Jillian said...

It looks awesome! I love the colour!

Very Prairie said...

You look amazing! Your dress (color, fit, style) is incredible! Adding this one to my sewing wishlist.

Joyce in NC said...

I love the color and the fit on you. This is a great dress on you.

Anonymous said...

Holy cow! This is STUNNING on you!!! Great job!

SherryV

Anonymous said...

Absolutely Stunning!

Ola

LindaNan said...

I think this is the classiest look you've done since I've been reading your blog

Noile said...

Adorable! It looks as if it were designed especially for you! I bought this book in San Francisco last month (Kinokuniya on both coasts, whoo-hoo!) and can't wait to play with it, even though I'm really more the tweed type. It's just so much fun seeing how the Japanese patterns are drafted and diagrammed - not to mention how different, in large and small ways, the styling is.

mochimo said...

It's such a wonderful dress and you look enchanting in it! Very beautiful photos too.

Kathi said...

Beautiful birthday dress!!!!!!!!!!!

eword10 said...

Oops, I left my happy birthday comment on the wrong post. Please forgive me. I LOVE THIS DRESS. Wow, the wow factor is just to die for. You look positively radiant in this dress. I loved that you used the silk jersey already! Beautiful!

Cennetta said...

Happy Belated Birthday! The dress is exquisite! Yes, ultra sexy too.

Connie B said...

Holy cow batman - that is stunning! I can second the etsy store, having bought some japanese books there in the past with great service.

Shasha said...

Tout simplement magnifique.....
Bravo

Wali said...

Very good work ! Pretty dress ! Bravo !

phisso said...

toutes mes félicitations!!une belle reussite!!!!

CelineSon said...

Tres jolie ta robe et la couleur te va tres bien !

eva said...

is there a sweing book for beginners that you can recommend?i love japanese style... THSNKS

naninotte said...

Perfect dress for a beautiful woman. So girly !
Trop jolie dans ta robe.

Wax_up said...

Your dress is amaizing, it suits you very well!!!
Elle te va a merveille!!!
;)

K.Line said...

Hi Trena: I love this dress and I got Drape Drape for my birthday last month. I'm trying to make dress no. 3 and I agree that the pattern tracing is unnecessarily hideous :-) Can you confirm for me that you added in your seam allowances. I assume that's the way it must be but I'm so thrown by the lack of comprehensible direction that I don't want to mess it up. Thanks so much for any feedback you can provide. I'm at kristinm100@yahoo.ca.

Beth said...

Your dress looks awesome! I'm in the long process of making the same pattern. Fingers crossed it comes out as nicely as yours!

Roxanne said...

Your dress is fabulous! I hope you don't mind, but I will be featuring it my blog's "Eye Candy" segment. People must know about this amazing creation, seriously!