Monday, 19 May 2014

Curtain Couture - The Designer Edition


Sportsville printed cotton maxi skirt (courtesy of my fabulous campaign manager, Curtise), polka dot gypsy top (Salvation Army, 75p)

I bought these Grace Sullivan "Tree Tops" screen-printed curtains from a car boot sale held over the last Bank Holiday weekend. As the seller had them hanging up on his car I was a bit reluctant to enquire about the price, assuming they were a treasured possession. When he asked if two quid was acceptable and offered to chuck in a set of 1950s satin rose print boudoir curtains for free I almost bit his hand off.


Sold through Heals in 1971, this fabric goes for silly money on eBay but there was no way the lure of making a few quid would stand in the way of creating a new frock, besides I already had the pattern in mind, a 1970 Kenzo design darling Helga sent me last year.


The pattern was missing the instructions but under Liz's expert supervision we soon figured out how to assemble it, knocking it up in less than four hours with a break for peanut butter sandwiches, a stroll around her garden and a spot of sunbathing.



Kenzo's original designs were made using a mix of fabric he'd bought cheap from flea markets so hopefully he'd approve of my cheap-as-chips curtain couture.

Handmade Kenzo maxi worn with vintage '70s suede platforms (£9.99 eBay, 2011)

I'm committing the heinous crime of posting before I've caught up on my blog reading but I wanted to join Patti & the gang over at Visible Monday before the day was out.


See you soon with some amazing finds from last weekend's Stourbridge fair.

81 comments:

  1. The fabric you used is glorious and looks wonderful as a dress, well done you for figuring it out without the instructions (says me who usually discards them!) xxx

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  2. Well done you two! Gorgeous job (as per) you look lovely.

    And what a bargain!

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  3. Wow being awake at 2.30am with a wakeful baby was worth it, you look wonderful. What a terrific effort the cut and style of the dress are perfect for you and the print.

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  4. your curtain to fashion and vice versa abilities are amazing to me. i tell all my friends about it. they think it is wonderful too.

    you look beautiful as ever in your garden!

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  5. Lovely dress but I would have kept the curtains!

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  6. ooh, the fabric is heavenly and made for that pattern! Love it, well done, and thanks for sharing with Visible Monday! xox

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  7. I see you on a tropical Island in that dress (drinking a rum and coke of course), very well done. You look fabulous in it!

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  8. Ooooh! Chicness!! Now I'm off to dig up old curtains that mom may have stashed away somewhere! :)

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  9. As soon as I saw that fabric, I just KNEW it was destined to be a fabulous maxi! What a great job you and Liz did of figuring out the pattern, it looks amazing, and you look like the cat that's got the cream! The print is beautiful, isn't it, and the Kenzo pattern has your name all over it (you need to make the mini version and some flares now too!)
    Glad to see the Sportsville skirt getting an outing too. Now stop being a tease and show us what you found at the fair! Love ya! xxxxx

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  10. Wow, they are really beautiful curtains! I really like what you've dine,with them x

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  11. I LOVE that tree fabric, such a great find. Well done

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  12. Fabulous frock with bright original patterns , curtain couture rules !
    Lovely turquoise earrings and blue psychedelic skirt ...

    Have a wonderful evening Vix ...
    Sunny kisses
    ~ La Dryada ~

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  13. That fabric is amazing---I am so impressed with how you (and Helga, too) make dresses out of curtains/sheets. I've got a couple of kid's sheets that will make great skirts---Superman and Star Wars!

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  14. Absolutely gorgeous fabric, and even better turned into a frock! Love it, and what a talented lady you are! x

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  15. mr. kenzo would be very happy with this frock i´m sure! fabulous!!!
    but i like your laundry maid outfit too :-)
    xxxx

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  16. Fantastic find love. That design is as hard to find as rocking horse shit. Looks absolutely wonderful as a maxi. Beautiful.
    Loves ya.
    xxxx

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  17. That fabric is just wonderful and what better way to use it than that lovely garment.

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  18. I really love Sportaville skirt designs, look at those elephants! I am so into curtain fabric for clothing. I found a set with a pink background, white clouds and hearts. Going make a fabulous dress for me very soon.

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  19. Your curtain corture is always the best sewing!

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  20. Lovely fabric and looks great as a maxi dress. Good job on figuring how the pattern worked - two heads are better than one. xx

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  21. Eek! I had that pattern. I made it out of baby blue pinwale corduroy and wore it with a poor boy tee shirt underneath. See how old I am???? Your version is sooooo much better. Infinitely better. Curtain couture is now my favorite kind of couture. And your little gypsy clothesline outfit is divine.

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  22. wow, it looks fantastic - what a talent you have. Looking fab

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  23. What a gorgeous fabric! The combination with turquoise bracelets and earrings is just irresistible!

    Love you,
    Masha

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  24. By the way, speaking of sewing, I'm going to attempt to make a boob tube inspired by your lovely tutorial. Yey!!

    Masha

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  25. Fabulous frock! That pattern is wonderful. You've rather inspired us to get our sewing machine out.

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  26. This is amazing, such gorgeous fabrc, which really suits you and I love the style you chose to make.

    Have a perfect night xx

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  27. What a marvelous print. And it is perfect for that maxi wrap-around dress made without instructions! You look fabulous in it. Well done, well done indeed. Now what's happening with the other curtains thrown in for free?

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  28. Love the print of the dress and the halter back! stylenudge.com

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  29. Phew, you've done those gorgeous curtains proud! xxx

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  30. That! Is! Gorgeous! Just like a painting! 2 quid and 4 hours work and look at you, looking like a million dollars cash. Well done!

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  31. Oh Vix this print is crazy good! I am so blown away by your skills on that machine and with finding such beautiful unique treasures. Liz is a sweet friend and most knowledgeable when it comes to sewing. I bet you guys had fun. The dress is banging gorgous but nothing compares to your bright smile. I hope you guys sold loads this weekend and enjoyed your much deserved night out with the gang!!
    LOVE YOU!
    XXXXXOOOOOOO

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  32. Your curtain couture always amazes me, but the designer edition totally blows me away. Stunning - coming and going. This makes me think of window treatments in a totally new way!

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  33. I love your polka dot gypsy top! Acquiring it for only 75p is mind-boggling. You styled the pretty gypsy top very nicely with your green-on-blue-printed Sportsville cotton maxi-skirt. Your dressmaking talents are remarkable as demonstrated by your before photos of the Grace Sullivan "Tree Tops" curtains followed by after photos modeling the lovely dress you created out of them. Not to worry about blog reading on my account, since I haven't done a new post since my 6th of May post titled"Shadowline and Victorias Secret Lingerie Fashion OOTDs and Reviews with Dressing Room Selfie Photos and Video with Blooper" which you already left an absolutely fabulous comment on (thank you)!

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  34. I adore the print, and what a smashing dress on you! Perfect! xx

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  35. Perfect dress for that print, it looks great. I would also really love to see those satin rose print boudoir curtains!

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  36. I love this tree top print. To see the finished product as a dress is exciting. Its so pretty on you, amazing! :-)

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  37. That is a great pattern and it makes an adorable dress! :)

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  38. Just gorgeous .. you clever girl … I'd surrender if I found I was missing the instructions.
    xx

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  39. Wow...that's a stunner on you! The fabric is incredible & the style is just gorgeous. LOVE it. Xx

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  40. OH it looks great! Nice curtains but even better as a dress! I am committing all sorts of heinous crimes this week. My brain is not functioning well so lord knows what sorts of comments I am leaving on blogs. Pathetic comment leaving aside, my comments always come with blog hugs and a glass of cyber wine.
    xoxo

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  41. Amazing! Just amazing! truly inspired choice! And what a beautiful job on the fit too. So many talents in just one lady. :)
    xxx

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  42. The dress is absolutely fabulous Vix! My question to you is how do you maintain such a flawless complexion? You are absolutely stunning!

    *HUGS*
    DeLynn in Dallas

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  43. The dress looks perfect on you. The fabric is gorgeous ... so much better as a Vix dress than a pair of curtains! M x

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  44. The fabric is amazing and the open-back dress will be great to wear at hot sunny days.

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  45. Hello V,

    Gosh, you transform yourself faster than Superman!

    From curtains to couture in a matter of hours....you really are a miracle worker. And, the dress looks so fabulous on you. Accessorised with the Emerald Cunard stack of bangles, it is perfect.

    And, what is not to like when one's campaign manager gives one clothes to wear too......amazing!

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  46. What a bargain :-) You look fabulous love the dress amazing what you can make when you put your mind to it :-) Love xxx

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  47. You're so blooming jammy. When I was shopping with Zoe on Friday we saw loads of gorgeous 70's fabrics. We said Vix would get that for 50p and something free thrown in. To us it was £18. We didn't buy!

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  48. The dress is stunning Vix, as is the pattern. It fits you like a glove.

    X x

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  49. That dress is amazing Vix, I'm sure Kenzo would approve! x

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  50. You and Liz are a master team! the dress is flaming gorgeous, I love the neckline and back detail, it's all perfect! peanut butter sandwiches and sunshine too, all perfect x x x

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  51. wouuauua, gorgeous!!!
    it's a so pretty print and so pretty patern that it must to be a perfect dress and so It Is!!, and it's also Perfect For your Glorious Style!!
    I'm über-enthusiastic!!!
    besos & vestidos

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  52. Your credit lothes arent only full of style but full of friends! Truly feel good. You look divine -what a fab print!

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  53. What a fantastic job you did of the instruction-free Kenzo pattern, you did an amazing job and lucky to have Liz to help. I love to hear the tales behind your amazing fabric purchases, actually all of your bargains! Yup, Kenzo would definitely approve! xxxxxx

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  54. Stunning! What an amazing fabric and dress! You were lucky with that fabric, its lush!
    P.S. Keeping my fingers crossed for you at the Awards xxx

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  55. Beautiful fabric and stunning dress! Looks like there is no wear on the fabric as curtains either, how lucky!

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  56. Wow! << I say that because of the awesome fabric you got at such a terrific price and also because your creation looks so darn good on you. You look gorgeous and happy!

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  57. When I see you turn out a splendid creation like this, it makes me want to take a crack at sewing again. That is the perfect summer dress! I should probably just send you all the fabric I've been hoarding and let you make things.

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  58. So that's what you've been up to whilst I've been away. You are SO clever to decipher patterns without instructions, I'm sure I'll struggle with them! That fabric is simply stunning and was just crying out to be made into a 'showcase' maxi. Looking forward to next time and the amazing finds. Hope the campaign is going well?
    xxx

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  59. Great to see the sun shining on your lovely new creation.

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  60. It's just fecking FANTASMO!!!! Gorgeous curtains, and they shall see the light again and again as this magnificent creation!!!
    Instructions are over rated, darling!!!
    Love Helga xxxXXXxxx

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  61. Absolutely gorgeous Vix :-) Like a ray of sunshine you are!
    Been catching up on a few posts on here... great news about the Glasto tickets :-)

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  62. New to your blog - I'm an instant fan.

    Love, love, love this fabric.

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  63. Absolutely beautiful Vix, my second favourite curtain couture yet. C'mon the flamingo shower curtain rain mac in going to take some beating x

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  64. Love the curtains! I've never thought of it before! What a cool idea! P.S. I voted for you, Vix!

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  65. Happy you were given a fantastic deal on the curtains! And the maxi dress came out very well.

    - Karen
    www.MrsLookingGood.com

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  66. Vix, I'm running out of original words! Your dresses, both handmade or charity shopped, are so You...even hanging on the line, they are full of joy and life and zest and cheer! And this me-make is just as vibrant as any I've seen you wear! It's lovely and you wear it well. I love the turquoise accessories and polish! Have you made the pants from the pattern? They look like they'd be fun too!

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  67. Another fabulous curtain creation! Who needs destructions when you have a Liz to help? Great print, great pattern and you look radiant in the results. Now that backless number has just reminded me, how did you get on with the showgirl maxi? I hope it didn't let you down. Peanut butter, yum. I have it on toast most mornings, gives me a bit of bounce! Xxxxxxx

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  68. You are the Queen of curtain couture! Also I do love that pattern, it looks like a simple but simply beautiful design!

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  69. OMG I had that exact same pattern
    I feel my age now but you certainly look fabulous in that halter dress

    ...:)...
    blessings

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  70. On a dead run and so far behind, but I have to pause and tell you how fantastic this creation is on you. Oh, good job, you! Fans ... I'm so charmed.
    Heinous? Really that bad? I'm never caught up on blog reading and commenting! Apologies universally, but I'll try to do better!

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  71. Fantastic fabric and what a lovely creation you made :)
    Sooo talented!!

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  72. yay! you sewed - and what a magnificent thing to have sewn! Love this so much!

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  73. I've spent the last week or so reading through your blog and getting to "know" you. I'm so inspired by your wit and self confidence. While my style preferences are rather different from yours I love how much you love what you're wearing. You've reminded me that it's ok to dress to please myself. I love treasure hunting at the thrift stores and I might be ready to start blogging myself, we shall see... In the meanwhile I will be adding your blog to my list of must reads. And now I'm going to put on a pretty summer dress I got last week because it makes me happy. I will also be putting on a wool sweater and knee high boots because it turned cold here again. Weird combo? - Who cares!?!

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  74. Just SO COOL!!! It takes a creative mind to see these as a maxi dress.

    To think this was once sheets...with people frolicking around on them doing only God knows what and now here you are in all your gloriousness. Brilliant. Just brilliant.

    bisous
    Suzanne

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  75. You picked the perfect pattern to make up the curtains in; it looks fantastic!

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  76. Having found your blog not too long ago, this is a perfect day of our first snow to hop around and see your wonderful style. When I came to this post, I gasped! LOL I haven't seen this fabric anywhere but have hoarded a 3 pair set of vinyl backed curtains in this pattern. I even got giddy. Although I love these colors, I do not typically where them...but you are definitely making me think of making them into something. Imagine a long fitted coat? My mind is going. LOL, I feel my mind IS going, but I meant in a creative way. ;D

    Great job!

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Love from Vix
xxx