Thursday, August 23, 2012

Stitched dresses {and film fashion}.

I had an idea, a while back, to embroider the gorgeous gown that Audrey Hepburn's character wears in Sabrina. That inspiration got me thinking about other memorable dresses or outfits from classic films. I was struck with the idea that there are some dresses that are so familiar to us classic movie nerds that we can instantly recognize them, even without a famous face wearing them.

And that's how the Film Fashion embroidery series was born. :)

Now, months and months later, the idea has actually turned into something real. I googled reference pictures of a few dresses, and worked on sketching out patterns. I'm not an artist, so this took quite a bit longer than it would have for an artistically inclined person. :) Then I tried to squeeze in the actual stitching in between the obsessive bouts of knitting that have come in the oddest of times, during this miserably hot summer.

So far there are three pieces, but I'm starting on some more, once I narrow down my favorites. My goal is about ten or twelve in total.

First up is, of course, Audrey Hepburn's Givenchy gown from Sabrina (seen here). This is my absolute favorite one that I've stitched so far (and I generally hate strapless dresses). I'm so tempted to keep it for myself, but I can always make one for myself later. I'm also biased because I adore the song that is playing in the background of the party scene: Isn't It Romantic?

You can find this embroidery in the shop here.

The second one is the black dress Rosemary Clooney wears in White Christmas, after she has run away from Bing (who, at the moment, she mistakenly thinks is a greedy jerk). I always loved this dress, with the unusual neckline and the flared, mermaid skirt. I also love the long, shimmery, white gloves she wears. I'm crazy about Rosemary Clooney's voice- I think she's very underrated! In this scene, she sings Love, You Didn't Do Right By MeI'm not crazy about the strange tanned men in black who dance in that scene, but that's another story.

This one is available in the shop here.

The third embroidery is the sweet blue gingham dress Judy Garland wore as Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz. This is probably the most recognizable outfit in classic movie history. And you'll probably have Over the Rainbow stuck in your head for the next week (you're welcome :). I know technically Dorothy doesn't have the ruby red slippers and things are a little less colorful when she sings the song, but I couldn't resist including them.

You can find the embroidery here.

One of the reasons that I'm so excited about working on this series is because not only are the finished embroidery pieces for sale, but I also made patterns for them! So if you're a stitcher, you can make your own. You can find the embroidery patterns in the Etsy shop here.
So now I want to know...what is your favorite classic film frock? It doesn't have to be a dress- it can be anything, even a men's outfit (though personally I'm struggling to recall any memorable men's clothing. Except for maybe Gene Kelly's rolled-up shirt sleeves and vests- especially the yellow one!- in Singin' in the Rain). Do you have a favorite outfit from a newer movie?

Until next time,


  1. Mere words cannot begin to describe how much LOVE THIS!!!! Kristin, these pieces are fantastic! I'm struggling to decide between Rosemary Clooney's and Audrey Hepburn's for absolute favorite out of this first batch. But they are all WONDERFUL!

    I just had two quick ideas, you may have thought of them already...

    The "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" pink dress Marilyn Monroe wears in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. The yellow dress Cyd Charisse wears when dancing with Gene Kelly in Brigadoon, or the green number she wears during the Broadway ballet in Singin' In the Rain. The "feather dress" Ginger Rogers wears in Top Hat.

    Needless to say I cannot WAIT to see what you come up with next!

  2. I just thought of two more dresses that I love - the blue chiffon dress Grace Kelly wears in To Catch a Thief, and the black and white dress she sports in Rear Window.

    (Did I mention I LOVE this idea of yours? And that I can't wait to see what you come up with next?) :)

  3. Okay, that is such a creative idea! Love it! The first dress is my favorite.

  4. I'm so excited that you've started creating your own embroidery patterns. I can't wait to see all of the designs you come up with. I particularly like the Sabrina dress! (PS What abut the back of Audrey Hepburn's dress in Breakfast at Tiffany's?)

  5. Rosemary's stitched dress is simply the bees' knees! Oh, I grew up as a small girl singing that song along with the movie & not knowing exactly what it was all about, except that I loved it! So pretty! Fabulous work, Ms. Artiste!


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