Do you have anyone whose designs you look at and just think “Ugh, I would wear every single thing you make?” For me, that designer is Teuta Matoshi. She makes these gorgeously romantic dresses that I’m absolutely obsessed with. Her designs are so dreamlike and would make anyone feel like the most beautiful person in the world. As soon as I received this stunning butterfly-printed chiffon from Minerva, I knew that I wanted to create a Matoshi–inspired dress. In addition to the black and cream chiffon from Minerva, I used butterfly embellishments from Lace Emily on Etsy to create this dreamy garden dress.
The polyester black chiffon sent to me from Minerva served as the start of my inspiration. It’s such a unique material and I knew I wanted to create something really special with it. Once I found, purchased, and received the butterfly fabric from Etsy (after a month), I was ready to get to work. Like most chiffon, you have to be careful with unfinished seams and be sure to handle the edges with care. The fabric can fray, but it’s easy to prevent this by finishing the edges and hems with a serger/overlocker or zigzag stitch. The chiffon washes well and feels wonderful against my skin. It’s a light fabric, so even though I used two layers of fabric for my dress, I also wore a black foundation garment under it for more coverage.
For the butterfly embellishments, all I did was cut various sized butterflies off the fabric and apply them to the neckline, shoulders and back of the dress. Originally, I hand sewed the butterflies, but after the first dozen or so, I remembered that I had fabric glue. In the past, I’ve had good results using Gutermann HT2 fabric glue, so I switched from hand sewing to gluing on the butterflies and I saved a ton of time! The embellishing was going by so quickly that I had to stop myself from going butterfly crazy. Otherwise, this dress would be completely covered in butterflies! ?
I really don’t have a name for this design since it is such a mishmash of many different influences. The dual layer skirt is self-drafted, and I combined the bodices from two Seamwork patterns (Kimmy and Killian) to create the V-neck top with gathered shoulder bishop sleeves. I didn’t want to make an elastic waistband for fear that it would rub against the chiffon and ruin it, so I made a simple fabric belt instead. Despite my love of them, I didn’t add pockets to this dress. Chiffon is so delicate that it doesn’t make practical sense to insert chiffon pockets. It’s hard, but I think it was for the best. I really love this dress! It’s fun and floaty and perfect for a picnic date or an outside formal event.