Self Assembly Required

DIY dressmaking + crafts with Emily

A By Hand London Eloise maxi dress (with even more ruffles!)

I had a dream of a burgundy ruffley dress. So I made one!

I’ve loved the idea of print clashing for a while but I’ve never really done it in one garment. (I did a skirt and blouse thing here but it’s not quite the same…).

When I came across these fabrics at the Sew Me Sunshine pop up a while back, I figured this would be a great time to try it out!

The two prints had a matching burgundy background with wildly different floral prints over the top. The colours overlapped enough that I thought it would work together. (After buying it, I second guessed this decision A LOT but I went with my gut and followed through!).

I originally wanted to make the By Hand London Eloise exactly how I had made it before (see it here) – midi length with the big circle ruffle and elbow length ruffled sleeves.

But then I thought to myself “Go big or go home!”.

So I decided to go full out maxi dress!

I was a bit limited with my fabric – I’d bought 1.5m of each print which would’ve been enough for my original plan of the midi length Eloise. But I knew how much fabric that full ruffle takes up from previous experience and I knew that I couldn’t keep that width and have the length too!

So I compromised and made a plainer and less full two tiered ruffled skirt (essentially lots of rectangles gathered and sewn together) but I added an extra contrast print little ruffle in between!

(I don’t know why these photos have come out so pink by the way. I need to go back and check the settings on my camera!)

It’s not as dramatic when I twirl around which is a little bit of a shame. (I love twirling in my original Eloise!). It’s still loads of fun to wear though!

I wore this for a night of immersive dining at The Vaults in Waterloo a few days ago. It was a show called Divine Proportions and the theme was gods and goddesses. Needless to say it attracted quite an eclectic crowd… I fitted in in my ruffley concoction and added on a floral headband to complete the look! It’s a bit weird old lady/ vintage boho but I kind of liked it!

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