Wool crepe day dress
Interestingly, the Donna Karan Vogue pattern for this dress was labeled ‘facile’ but the reality of the construction was anything but easy. However, Ngaire Henstock loves to sew and rose to the challenge. The pleats, gathers and pockets were worked into a single piece of fabric and the complex design required various make solutions such as underarm gussets and false hems. Ngaire made the dress for her daughter Paula, a foundation staff member at the upmarket Regent Hotel, probably for a special work function. The shoulder pads lend the garment its distinctive 80s style, reminiscent of the power dressing popularised by the American TV series Dynasty and New Zealand’s own glamorous soap, Gloss. Read more about the history of home sewing in the New Zealand Fashion Museum publication Home Sewn.