Prom Dresses!

For sewists, I think that sewing prom dresses is either the most fun that you can have, or the most intimidating.  You want everything to be just perfect for the big night which can be intimidating, but the fabrics and styles that you get to sew with are amazing.  This year, I made two dresses and had fun with both.  One for my daughter, and one for one of her good friends.  Luckily, both girls chose simple designs and I didn't have to do any significant alterations, so this was a fun year for sewing prom dresses.

Choosing the pattern is half the battle.  My daughter likes simple and classic, and she ended up choosing one from the December 2008 Burda magazine- style 104 .  This is such a gorgeous yet simple style, that I think it would work for just about anyone.  The key to it is to find a beautiful fabric.  I had bought some Vera Wang Silk Satin from when they had it on sale for $2/yard.  Unbelievable!  This should be $40/yard fabric.  It was heaven to work with.  Here is a close-up of the bodice:
The pattern had a pattern for fabric straps, but I saw these pearl straps at Joann's and thought they would add a nice touch.  They are strangely elasticized though, so don't help at all in holding the dress up.  She used the sticky tape that night just to be on the safe side. Here is a view from the back:

Her friend wanted Butterick 5542 which is one of my favorites.  I've made this one before, and it obviously is a popular pattern as it has been in the Butterick book since 2001.  Right after I made this, I went out and bought two more copies of it, so that I will have spares just in case they discontinue it.  This is absolutely the only pattern that I've ever bought 3 copies intentionally for, so you know I must be crazy about it! The back is the stunning part of this dress. 
My daughter's friend chose a very pretty blue polyester stretch satin.  It wasn't as easy to work with as the purple silk satin, but the trade-off here was the stretch factor.  The stretch satin is very easy to fit and comfortable to wear. We only had one fitting session, so I really was relieved when she tried it on, and everything fit so well.  She is 5 feet 10 inches, and I didn't add enough length for her to wear high heels, but that didn't seem to bother her one bit.  As you can see from this next photo, both dresses were just fine for dancing. 

My daughter and her date went to a formal store are were able to get a perfectly matched vest for his tux.  Here they are before heading out to the big dance:

That's all the prom dresses this year!



  1. You did a beautiful job on both dresses. What a deal to get that fabric for $2 a yard!! Your daughter is very pretty and her date coordinated so well with her!

  2. The young ladies look fabulous.

  3. Thanks for sharing the dresses. They are both stunning. I love the bodice on your daughter's dress. And your garden is spectacular!

  4. Both dresses looks absolutely lovely and gorgeous! i adore them! very fun pattern indeed. i love to contribute in sewing something like this someday. u did absolutely a fantastic job. two thumbs up! :)

  5. Beautiful dresses. I LOVE sewing ball gowns too. Your daughter and her friend look lovely in the gowns you created for them.


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