Be classy or quirky in an appliqué party dress
Appliqué by definition refers to “ornamental needlework in which pieces of fabric are sewn or stuck on to a larger piece to form a picture or pattern”. It is commonly used for a variety of garments, ranging from table and bed linen to children’s outfits. Popular with those who enjoy do-it-yourself art projects and budget fashion followers who like creating their own unique styles, appliqué has made its way into the party dress wardrobe as well, and is one of the most popular styles of party dresses for 2013. No longer restricted to pretty flowers and multicolored patches, appliqué work on party dresses can be intricate and detailed, with themes ranging from delicate oriental work to more recent styles such as glam and punk.
One of the most popular styles of appliqué party dresses involves flowers and oriental motifs. Classic and feminine, these forms of appliqué generally suit dresses in neutral shades so that the colors stand out in contrast. This is a very simple look to acquire as one could upcycle an old LBD/LWD [little black/white dress] by sewing some appliqué flowers and leaves to one side of the dress. This style is a hot seller in most stores and is widely available.
Another popular appliqué style is a throwback to the era of “disco fever” which involved copious quantities of appliqué in the form of sequins and shiny beads. Channeling this look involves sticking or sewing the sequins and other material onto a sturdy piece of fabric, cutting it out in the desired shape, and then sticking or sewing it onto the dress. Almost every celebrity in the 80s era has been spotted in a shiny or beaded appliqué dress, from Oprah to Barbara Walters. Recently, celebrities such as singer Katy Perry and the very fashion forward entertainer, Lady Gaga have been spotted bringing the style back.
One of the most common places to spot appliqué work on a party dress is via lace appliqués, which are often used to add elegance to a party dress. This, like the flower appliqué party dresses, is popular and widely available, lace yokes being a popular addition to any kind of party or formal wear.
Appliqué party dress styles include edgier styles as well, in the form of metal studs and rivets, which are added to dresses to give them that rockstar like appeal. The method of application is the same, i.e. they are either sewn on or stuck. Some futuristic looking styles include metallic studs in the shoulder area followed by skull, star and other designs sewn around the hem. Lady Gaga and a number of rock musicians are responsible for the popularization of this look.
There is no limit to the designs and embellishments that can be added to a dress to make it an appliqué party dress. One could try buying the more popular styles off the shelf, or could take the fun route by customizing their own unique appliqué party dress creation. All you need are needles and thread, your favorite appliqué cutouts, some colorful beads and sequins, and of course a dress, which is soon to become your very own designer appliqué party dress!