Alexander Henry Folklorico, Raja Gemini, and Vogue 2429

I've had these Alexander Henry Folklorico fabrics in my collection since summer of 2014. I am really glad that I waited to let my mind work around the ideas of this fabric and let it tell me exactly what it wanted to be.  I thought maybe a high-waisted dirndl skirt at first and bought only a yard of each fabric.  Luckily, I had just enough to make a dress.

And more importantly, I suddenly had inspiration too!  Raja Gemini, goddess of the Fashion Photo Ruview came to my town. Of course, to meet one of my all-time fashion idols... I had to make a dress to wear.  And not just any dress... but something with a bit of showstopper sass. The moment for this incredibly beautiful fabric had arrived.

And the most wonderful moment of the night?!  Meeting Raja and having her compliment my dress! Swoon.

She's so beautiful and she was absolutely charming and lovely in the Meet and Greet.  She gave each person a tiny jewel of her time. Here's the polaroid from the preshow.

Vogue 2429 sewed up like a dream for me, as it did in my navy gingham muslin & my Amy Butler floral birthday dresses a couple summers ago.
For both of these previous makes, I gathered the center bust to make a sweetheart neckline. For this iteration, I preferred the smooth, higher neckline, to show off more of this delightful print.

I really love the way the center lotus fades into the upper petals of my tattoo.  
I had a marvelous time at the event and I loved wearing such a bold dress. It is definitely for special-occasions.  I was thinking of trying to stitch this fabric up for my birthday, but I actually have a different inspiration for my birthday dress this year... so I was really happy to have the spark of inspiration to make such a fun dress from this fabric and set it free from becoming that status of deep stash fabric that becomes too sacred, sentimental, or obsolete to ever use.

This project inspired me to step it up a bit.  To be creative, to be a problem-solver and a bit of an artist.  I loved taking extra time - it took about a week of mindful, step-by-step work to leisurely & carefully assemble.

Getting inspired to use this fabric that was in danger of never getting used, but just collected in a stagnant way, started me really thinking about the materials I choose to collect - how to organize them, how to care for them, how to use them, how to intentionally add to and curate my collection of raw materials. I've also been thinking about planning what to make and how to make it as a process - something to be savored and enjoyed in and of itself... in addition to the joy one might take in wearing a finished garment.

I've been pushing myself to invest just a little bit more time and effort, a little bit more pushing myself - either by making something a bit wild or learning/practicing new or more special techniques - such has special top-stitching or hand-picked zippers.

I'm looking forward to wearing and blogging about some of these new makes during Me-Made-May.  Only 3 days in, I'm feeling inspired and curious for the month & year ahead.