It was at a car boot sale several years ago, I glimpsed this bright hot pink fabric peeking out of a gigantic heap of secondhand clothes that had been dumped out of suitcases right onto the concrete. The dress itself wasn't very exciting - a fairly shapeless 60s shift which had been shortened and let out at the seams at some point in its history. But the colour and scribbly, atomic-era print appealed. I think I paid £2. Since it wasn't really my style, I listed the dress for sale but it never found a buyer, and it languished for years in my 'stock room' (ahem - my mother's attic ).
I always found myself drawn to the print though, and the dress eventually became a candidate for a refashioning project. Deciding how best to proceed was a challenge as there was so little fabric available to work with: it pulled at the bust on me; it was too short and with very little hem; and the seam allowances were already at 1/4" from the previous owner's refashion efforts. But I thought it could work - just!
I decided to add a contrast midriff insert, in order to both tailor the fit and create additional length. As with my other recent refashion project, the Bluebirds and Bluebells dress, I was picturing a colour match but a textural contrast to complement the satiny acetate faille. As luck would have it, a Goldhawk Road trawl brought me just the thing: a soft double jersey in a tonally spot-on (not too orange, not too magenta) hot coral pink. To add ease in the bust I also pieced in fabric from the original facings (which meant I then needed to get new facing fabric!). I'm actually kind of proud of my pattern matching here - obviously with the fabric limitations an exact pattern match was impossible, but I was able to more or less match up the scribble 'knots' and stripes - and the seam isn't too obvious.