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Teal Madeleine

Added May 3, 2010

by misslivia

Ellensburg, Wash...






When I was in the Philippines at the textile market, I found a great shop that sold me shantung silk (polyester) for about $1.20/yd. And they had about every color you could desire! I found a teal colored fabric that immediately reminded me of my younger sister’s taste. I snapped up 6 yards and told her that come spring, I would make a custom prom dress for her.

March of this year came and I broke out my pattern drafting kit. She showed me a few photographs of dresses she liked and I designed a garment that combined as many elements of the garments as possible. She wanted a unique strappy back and for the dress to be fitted through the bust and waist, with it flaring out by the hips. I wanted to make a fashion-forward one-shouldered piece, so I added that element in.

I used my prom dress pattern from 4 years ago to make the skirt of the dress, but I modified the top and back of the pattern. My sister had tried on my prom dress (which was also made of a shantung silk, but in purple) and liked the fit of the waist through the hem, so I just used the pattern instead of trying to draft my own version.

It was quite tricky to find a chiffon overlay that would work with her taste of colors and patterns as well as with the teal color, as I could not find a shantung silk in the US stores that matched the shade of teal that I had picked out. Also tricky was that fact that we were only going to be in the same city for about 3 days during my spring break from school, so I had to draft, mock-up, and fit her before she left for a different state. However, after making up the actual garment, I had to go back to school without trying the final piece on her, which meant my mom (who is a brilliant seamstress!!) had to do all the fitting and finishing. She told me that apparently she had to take 4 inches in at the top of the bust, which is shocking because I didn’t change the pattern from the mock up that I made! My mom finished the overlay from a verbal description and sketch that I sent her. I am really grateful that she was able to finish it in time for prom!

Also, the last picture is one that I took of the back, so it is not as nicely colored as the professional ones and I cannot seem to make it orientate correctly. The file is up and down, but when uploaded it flips. I even tried to rotate the file before uploading, but it did not help.

Material Notes

Shantung Silk
Polyester chiffon




Garment Type
Evening Wear



16 Comments Sign in to add a post

  • Xenia_large

    Jan 9, 2011, 06.58 AMby Xenia phillip

    this is great i love it and it looks nice on her

  • Dscf3516rasp1n_large

    May 9, 2010, 08.42 PMby stephiaffi

    This dress is gorgoeus!

  • Dsc00207_large

    May 6, 2010, 01.24 PMby eatthatmonkey

    at first glance girl in the photo looked like blair form ‘gossip girl’.

  • Missing

    May 6, 2010, 08.39 AMby sewhappy-1

    This is gorgeous. Wish my prom dress fr way back was half as beautiful as this!

  • Tammy20-1_large

    May 5, 2010, 07.55 PMby tletroisebrown

    I love this! It’s great!

  • Tammy20-1_large

    May 5, 2010, 07.55 PMby tletroisebrown

    I love this! It’s great!

  • Crop_rewhitestand_large

    May 4, 2010, 11.51 AMby Carolyn Baxter

    Awww what a nice story- `I love it when a garment has a story behind it! x

  • Dscn5250_large

    May 4, 2010, 09.09 AMby mixtlii

    Oh, I’m so happy to hear that! I am going to the Philippines soon, and I was hoping to find nice and cheap fabric… :D Yours is wonderful !

    3 Replies
    • Purple-hat6_large

      May 4, 2010, 02.38 PMby misslivia

      If you are going to Manilla, get some one to take you to Divasoria. It is in the poorest area of town and in a couple of buildings that look deserted, so it is really best if someone you know can guide you through the maze of fabric shops. Have fun!

    • Dscn5250_large

      May 4, 2010, 04.20 PMby mixtlii

      Thank you so much!!!

    • Missing

      May 6, 2010, 08.37 AMby sewhappy-1

      If you find the time, you can also go to the New Taytay (pronounced as “tie-tie”) Market in Taytay, Rizal, a suburb outside of Manila. I heard it has TONS of cheap fabric and all sorts of sewing stuff! It’s a bit of a ways off from Manila, the capital, unfortunately.

  • Green_eyes_large

    May 4, 2010, 07.56 AMby frankiesoup

    What an incredible colour, and a great cut!

  • Jagg_large

    May 4, 2010, 05.45 AMby lizah

    she looks fantastic in it, good job, it’s lovely!

  • Img_20160222_155241214_large

    May 4, 2010, 05.36 AMby milkyway

    Great project, the color is amazing, the design too and your sister is so adorable!!

  • Palmhand_large

    May 4, 2010, 05.18 AMby benew

    Score on 6 yards of Shantung! The teal is simply stunning and she looks so good in it. Bravo on all your hard work! I see what you mean about the overlay and flower but your design in real life is so pretty. Her joy makes it even better. _ Was the bodice +shoulder strap difficult to pull off?

    1 Reply
    • Purple-hat6_large

      May 4, 2010, 06.53 AMby misslivia

      Not hard at all – I basically drafted a sweet heart bodice, cut the back away and then added straps at the last step. I wanted to make the foundation strong enough that I didn’t necessarily need straps to hold it up, so that I knew I could tack the overlay the way I wanted and not have to worry about them holding a significant amount of weight. Underneath the larger pieces are smaller (1 inch wide) straps that are stitched into the garment, those are taking any weight.

  • 1_large

    May 4, 2010, 01.57 AMby ashchaser

    this is wonderful and the teal is quite nice! I’m sure your sister’s prom was fantastic thanks to your ravishing creation!

  • 9b6a2f8482f1e431b0a19a8ca8d654b3ccf1ed36_large

    May 4, 2010, 01.34 AMby pink-cornelia

    you are the best sister, she looks so pretty, what a cute dress.

  • Photo_on_2011-12-16_at_16_16_2_large

    May 4, 2010, 01.18 AMby peachypanda

    purely gorgeous! she looks fantastic

  • Purple_really_small_modified_large

    May 4, 2010, 01.13 AMby marinaglory

    Beautiful! I love the fabric’s sheen.. Ooh and the one-shoulder detail is really nicely incorporated.. This definitely wins you the ‘Most Awesome Older Sister’ award! :)

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