The hair either covers the face or isn’t defying gravity. That’s why, whenever one succeeds in getting a perfect hair flip, one must make sure it is well admired. However hair isn’t the subject of this blog, so let’s move on to the real star: the dress.
I might live in Benin, but I still have the internet. And with the internet I have ebay. Ebay is full of old sewing patterns. Even better, patterns are nothing but tissue paper so shipping barely costs me anything.
I made 2 mistakes. The first, I graded the pattern too large for me. That’s okay, I can always make it smaller. The second mistake… well, can you see? I didn’t cut the pieces our correctly for the right and wrong sides. Oops. I had extra fabric so I recut the pieces that were wrong, so not too big of a deal except for wasting fabric.
And, done! Or so I thought. Until I turned around and realized that the zipper I had sewn in was already broken. This is a lesson to any seamstresses in Benin: buy the expensive zipper. Do not buy the 50CFA zipper, buy the 100CFA zipper, your life will be much better. I promise.
Possotomé is more than just a brand though, it’s an actual town where the water is bottled . It’s by a lake, so there are enough tourists who pass by here to make it worthwhile enough to run a hotel. This one is Chez Théo and we came here to have lunch on their lakeside deck (top left).
There was a big discussion between my friends and me because one friend thought this was a shift. Note I used it as a noun and not an adjective. He was adamant that this was called a shift, not a shift dress. I wasn’t alive at the time (sixties, seventies) so I had never heard of this term.
However, I later looked up what a shift dress was, and it turns out that a shift dress is a dress with no waist definition so it can fit a wide range of bodies. That isn’t my dress, the original pattern had two darts and then I added two more, so by doing that killed any chance of this dress being a shift.
He had as much fun behind the camera as I did in front of it and we played off of each other’s energy and ideas. “Do this!” “Do that!” “Cross your legs!” “Pretend you’re swimming!” “Flip your hair to the right!” “Oooo let’s go down to the boat” “Make a pensive pose!” “Stop smiling!” “Put the oar behind your head!” “Walk like a model!” “Go behind the bar!” Etc.
Pattern: 1966 Simplicity 6628
Fabric: Super Opulent Java 5396
Outfit Photos: John Mark F.