Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Strawberry Thief Belladone

Did you know that you can get Vans sneakers made from liberty fabric??! Back in mid-2013 there were 6 liberty prints available as Vans, however I only ever managed to find two of them in Australia, despite having decided that I must have the "Strawberry Thief" style. I also couldn't get them shipped to Australia easily, as supposedly they're imported here by a distributor.

Enormous thanks must go to the ever generous Poppykettle, who very kindly saved me a little bit of her precious luggage space from her trip to the US, to bring back these shoes for me (after I ordered them to be sent to her hotel).

Ever since achieving owning the shoes, I have also been plotting to make a coordinated outfit. Not a whole dress from the fabric, as that might be a bit too matchy-matchy, and also pretty pricey, but something using the liberty as a trim.

Just before Christmas, I bought this coordinating stretch sateen from Spotlight (although unimpressed with spotlight, 3 of the 5 pieces of fabric I bought that day had flaws in them, including this one. very unimpressed).

The liberty has so many colours in it that I had lots of different options for coordinating, but a lot of the possibles that I found didn't seem all that wearable. Bright pink? Too 'girly'. Pale Green? Too bright. Navy? No fun for summer. Then I spotted this steel-y blue. Yup, yup yup!

I chose to use the belladone pattern because it's perfectly suited to using bias binding as a feature. In addition to using bias on the back, and around the neckline and armholes, I also added a strip along each edge of the waistband, and along the opening of the pockets. I kept the bias binding as a thin line, making the visible width about 1/4".

I forgot to stitch down the top few inches of the pleats in the skirt, and may still go back and stitch them down by hand, as it really does make a big difference to the look of the skirt.

I was on a real hand sewing kick while making this dress. The first seam of the bias binding was done by machine, but the second side stitched down by hand. I also hand picked the zip up the back and did a hand stiched blind hem.

This dress has been a little while coming, but I'm thrilled with the end result. I'm expecting it to be great all year round, as I hope it'll be suitable to wear in colder weather with a long sleeved t-shirt and tights underneath.

Also, it turns out that it's pretty tricky to take photos that highlight that the dress and the shoes are coordinated, as the liberty on the dress is so far away from my feet!


Pattern: Belladone by Dear and Doe
Fabric: Stretch Sateen from Spotlight, "Strawberry Thief" Liberty Lawn from L'ucello
Notions: Thread, interfacing (for waistband), matching dress zip


See also: BusyLizzie, Millydodo, Tabatha Tweedie

So, dress coordinating with my shoes; Awesome or a little bit tacky?


  1. That is all kinds of awesome! I wish I had Liberty shoes. I'll add them to my never ending eBay search list.

  2. Awesome! Not tacky at all, and combined with a Belladone, perfection! I love that dress, although not sure what you mean when you talk about stitching down the pleats, I haven't done that on any of mine and they are all fine (I don't remember the instructions telling me to either).

    1. You are indeed correct. Must be a change that I made on my own. I still prefer it with the pleats slightly stitched down :)

  3. Love you matching sneakers! Great dress and especially like the details on the back. You should join in my Calendar Dresses challenge.

  4. You're a sewing machine! It's incredible how many finished garments you're sharing. And whenever I see one of yours Belladone it makes me want to make one for myself!

  5. That is an awesome outfit! I love the Vans and the coordination! Perfect! :)

  6. Liberty shoes! Liberty trim! How can those two things together not be awesome? Despite having a bad Spotlight purchase or three, that fabric is the perfect cloud and sheen for that pattern, you look great

  7. Your match match goodness makes my heart sing. Almost as much as your fun poses! Rocking as always, Rach! :D

  8. Great fitting dress and I think the amount if matchiness is just perfect.

  9. Fabulous dress! I love the liberty trim.


Comments make me smile :)

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