Saturday, 13 September 2014

An Aussie at a Scottish Polish Wedding

We have long been planning to attend a family wedding in Poland this September, and as Scottish formal attire is traditionally the kilt with a black jacket, we were going to make a big impression over there as a large contingent of kilt-wearing Scots.  As an Australian living in Scotland, I am wearing my tartan shoes and have tartan on my clutch, but I thought I would also include some Aussie-ness too!

I used this beautifully drapey and luxurious rayon fabric designed by Anna Maria Horner that has the leaves of my favourite tree, the eucalyptus tree.
So floaty!

We had these trees with the long leaves growing in our backyard when I was a child, and they remind me of the artwork of May Gibbs too.  I have always loved the shape of these leaves and even had them used in my wedding ring design.
Eucalyptus in Lime, rayon
For this dress I used Butterick 5987, version B
Butterick 5987 version b
The pattern is EASY.  It is designed for a light weight fabric but the drapey rayon worked really well.  I lined the bodice but not the skirt.  The pattern does ask for the bodice to have underlining as well as lining just to give the main fabric some structure, but I didn't use the underlining, as it was a summer wedding I didn't want too many layers for all that dancing!

Speaking of dancing, here are some photos of me dancing at the Polish wedding!  The dress felt really comfortable to wear.

The wedding reception was held in a rustic-looking barn-like restaurant, and this was the wall decoration at the table where we sat!

The dress details

For the belt, the pattern suggests a stretchy 2" bridal trim, but I went for satin ribbon with some sequined trim which I hand stitched.  At first I stitched the whole thing onto the waist by hand, but it looked all bumpy and wavey and didn't give me a narrow waist at all.  After unstitching I decided to only attach it at the zip seam, and then I tried the dress on to decide exactly how snug I wanted the waist ribbon to be, then cut four of the circles off and stitched the end to the zip seam too.  This is the only place where the belt ribbon is attached and it works perfectly!  The second photo below shows you how the belt is very loose when not being worn.  
I left a little bit of green ribbon at the edge to flap over the zip so that there is no visible colour gap, but as you can see in this last photo, the ribbon flap just sits over the zip.

About the pattern

The bodice is cut on the bias, and so has plenty of room to account for a bust and a tummy.  I cut the size 24 and made no alterations, apart from omitting the underlining and the skirt lining, only completing the bodice lining.  The instructions in the pattern never tell you to finish any seams, so I only finished the skirt seams with pinking shears and overlocked the bodice and waistband seams.

Here's one funny thing I found with the pattern:  What on earth are these circle markings for?  This is the pattern piece for the back of the skirt.  I didn't use them at all and there was no reference made to them in the instructions.
But there was no marking for the bottom of the zip, so perhaps that is what these are meant to be, and they just lost their way a little?  (When putting in my zip, I just started from the top and kept going until I got to the bottom without using any markings.)

It was a lovely time in Poland, and I loved wearing this dress! (tartan shoes are visible in this one)


  1. Wow, your dress is gorgeous, it looks amazing! A x

  2. Oh wow Nessa that is stunning! I wouldn't necessarily have guessed it from the envelope art but it looks so good on you, and I love the fabric too. Hope you have other opportunities to wear it!

  3. Such a beautiful dress! I love the idea of bringing Aussie-ness into the mix and it's amazing to see how well the colors of eucalyptus trees and tartan go together!

  4. You look amazing! The dress is gorgeous. X

  5. Gorgeous! It looks like you all had a great time!

  6. What a great dress and a wonderful way to represent Australia in such a multicultural outing.

  7. You sure put a smile on my face! You are super stunning and what a handsome husband! I just love that fabric mixed with the tartan!

  8. Gorgeous - you abd the dress, and the decorations!!! I think I was taught to use about. 6" of thread, start at the top layer sew a tiny stitch through paper abd both fabrics, down up abd down up, then ease fabrics apart about an inch abd snip, you now have marked both fabric in the sane place. I'm struggling to remember WHY though! Pocket placement? Or if the centre back seam needs to be started a few inches down as there will be a gap then a button at the top? Some instructions really are hopeless!

  9. Oh, Nessa, you look stunning! What a beautiful dress. And what an elegant way to reference Australia; that fabric is simply lovely. (Our international sporting team uniform designers need to consult with you immediately! ;) )

  10. Stunning Nessa, absolutely stunning, love the hair too xx

  11. You held the Aussie banner high with this stunning dress!

  12. It's gorgeous, and the print was perfect for you!

  13. You look so glam in this dress and such a great story behind the fabric.

  14. I can't believed I missed this post Nessa!! You look stunning is this dress! So perfect and beautiful!

  15. Fabulous dress, you look stunning! The colours are lovely and go perfectly with the tartan colours in the kilt.


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