My dad wrote a really wonderful book called David Brower: The Making of the Environmental Movement which you can buy here. I’m totally biased of course, he’s my dad, and I helped transcribe interviews, but it really is a fantastic book about an inspirational man who’s work revolutionaized conservation, but who’s name is sadly widely unknown. I actually knew Dave. I had the privilege of growing up just down the hill from the Browers and got to go to waffle breakfasts at their house on many a Sunday.
UC Press published the book and fittingly threw a party at the David Brower Center in Berkeley last night. For this occasion, I decided to make myself a new dress. Unfortunately it was cold enough that I never took my coat off, but thankfully I took pictures before hand!
The design took a while to come to me, but with the rainy weather we’ve been having I decided to try something pretty different for me; I added sleeves. To start, I went to my favorite fabric store in Berkeley called Stonemountain & Daughter where they have a truly spectacular selection of Batiks. The second I saw the bolt of this fabric, I fell in love. I ended up walking around the store with it clutched in my arms for a while, and after a bit realized that I was basically petting it I loved it so much!
When it came to construction, instead of dealing with darts like I normally do, I chose to go with princess seams to get a nice fit. During the construction process I kept getting major 80s flashes so I ended up raising the waist a bit and did my best to take out any fullness in the sleeves. It’s tough to get the fit you want and still be able to move your arms, but I think I managed in the end.
I had wanted to play with the colors and pattern of the fabric and piece it together in a cool way, but given the amount of fabric I had, my options ended up being pretty limited. I like the way it turned out a lot, but I wish I could’ve played with where the lighter color ended up a bit more.
For some reason I have been having some fit issues with the neckline in the last couple dresses I have made and had to give a little tuck at the neckline to get everything laying flat. Of course I ended up loving the detail; yay for happy accidents!