The Ila Dress

Last summer on my trip to Ukraine I came across a super cool fabric store. I wasn't looking to purchase any fabric while I was there. Of course I visited every fabric store I knew about, but most of them carried super fancy Italian goodness that was out of my price range. I did drool over it but had enough sense in me not to part with my money. Most Ukrainians who sew make garments. Quilting is not very known or popular. The typical quilting cotton so abundant here is called American cotton there and is not widely available. But there is all sorts of garment fabric to choose from.

My sister had to have a few dresses altered to fit her better and I was excited to go along to the alteration shop she usually uses. I chatted with the sewing lady and complained about the fabric prices and she snickered and informed me that I just didn't know the right  places to shop. We promptly went to the shop she recommended and I was in fabric haven.

The owner of the shop bought out left over fabric from several garment factories in Turkey. She brought a truck load of fabric every few months. She had rolls of fabric that was still a bit pricey. She also had big remnant pieces and then there were several boxes with scraps. The scraps were super cheap, about 25 cents per piece. The super cool fabric for this dress came from the scrap box. I found four pieces, three long and narrow ones and one short and wide.

Luckily my new pattern, the Ila dress, worked perfectly to use up the scraps. The fabric is some sort of viscose. It was a bit of a challenge to work with since it was slippery, but I love how it drapes.
At first I planned to have the border print that's on the sleeves to also go in front, but it didn't work. The border print wasn't symmetrical and didn't look right. Of course, it would have been better to make view B and eliminate the central panel all together, but I was working with scraps. It took a few tries and cost me probably a few additional grey hairs to match the print.

Now I could have matched the back better so the fabric pattern was seamless, but I spaced out and didn't. I regret that, but what do you do. At least the lines match up perfectly. Sigh.

Ania loves her new dress. She is not really into wearing dresses, but she does enjoy looking fancy. I am also pleased how it turned out, even though it was a bit of work to match everything up! The Ila dress pattern can be purchased here


  1. This is so gorgeous, Olga! The fabric is stunning! Did you only pipe the bodice? It's hard for me to tell based on the photos because I can't enlarge them on my phone. I'll have to look on my computer screen. I'd like to make this but I'm trying to decide whether or not I want to use piping. #bigdecisions 😂

  2. It's such a beautiful dress!! I can't even begin to imagine what it must have been like to match it all up with that slippery fabric, but the result is soooooooo worth it! And lucky Miss A who gets to wear this goodness. Super fancy <3

  3. The fabric is amazing. I can't believe they were remnants!


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