Pictures of this vintage "Rose de France" Dior dress have been haunting my dreams for many years. I just love it!
The main problem in recreating something like this is, of course, the glorious oversized silk floral fabric design. I often come across this issue . . . the fabric I have dreamed up in my head or see on a vintage piece just does not exist at the fabric store. Boo. Hiss.
Well, now that quite a few companies like Spoonflower and My Fabric Designs offer print on demand fabrics, I was one step closer. Heavy textured silks are still not an option, but it is definitely better than not having the option of making your own print.
The next hurdle was that I am basically a complete Photoshop/Illustrator newbie. Knowing what I want to print is one thing, but to go about creating it is a whole other story. The super frustrating part is that I want to do all sorts of complex things with a program that is completely foreign to me.
There was a fair amount of yelling at the computer screen during this process. But once I started searching for tutorials, things got a bit easier.
I started out simple. To get a better understanding of a repeating pattern I used this Instructable creating basic patterns in Photoshop. This Instructable was also very helpful to get me more comfortable with the basics of the program.
First things first . . . get acquainted with Photoshop. Illustrator is probably the better choice, but I am taking baby steps. There was also a deadline to contend with.
I was skeptical that the printing process would be printed exactly on grain (I have come across too many fabrics that are not to be trusting on this point) so straight lines and patterns seemed best to avoid. As a test and to familiarize myself with seamless repeats, I printed a sample of the random polka dot pattens I came up with running through the Instructable tutorials. I also ended up reading through some library books to help me on my journey, but there was a lot of wading through information that I did not need, so the online stuff really worked well. But simple dots were not what I wanted for this dress.
I really adore oversized florals. I may end up looking like an old sofa cushion, but I just don’t care! So I continued messing around with Photoshop, this time with photos of roses (thank you to my neighbors with all those amazing blooms!).
I ended up choosing a silk/cotton blend for my textile. It had a nice sheen to it, without looking too shiny. And silk/cotton blends are just lovely to work with!