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YSL Mondrian dress

Copy of 1965 YSL Mondrian dress
Copy of 1965 YSL Mondrian dress

Copy of 1965 YSL Mondrian dress

Photo: Nick Johnson

I have always loved this iconic dress, from Yve St Laurent's 1965 collection. He based that collection on the paintings of modern Dutch artist Piet Mondrian. He owned a Mondrian which was displayed in his Paris apartment.

Initially I tried adapting my own shift dress block to create the design, using no darts, as achieved originally by YSL. This was not very sucessful - as he was working with wool jersey I am assuming the main bust dart was shrunk out in some way. In the end, after producing five toiles, I relented and decided to use one discrete side seam bust dart.

My version is made from linen rather than wool jersey as I struggled to find the right colours in the right weight of wool. Personally I like the whiteness of the linen whereas wool is often slightly creamy-yellow.   

In order to get an authentic 1960s shift dress look I adapted a vintage pattern from YSL for Vogue - Paris Original V1556. In the commercial pattern the front yoke crosses the bust point, with the bust dart lost in the seam.

In copying the original red, blue and yellow version I left out the vertical stripes at the underarms and used dark navy for the stripes rather than black, but otherwise the design is very similar to the original.




Comments (12)

georgeshort7 georgeshort7 writes: I'm impressed
Posted: 1:43 am on January 26th

ronsanchez3 ronsanchez3 writes: Great One
Posted: 5:41 am on January 4th

Senoradulce Senoradulce writes: I saw this post too late to vote. I hope you win. The dress is beautiful and looks quite smart on you. You say it's "easy," but it looks challenging to me. Kudos to you! Now you've made want to make a similar dress. How did you find the pattern?
Posted: 5:04 pm on August 21st

sewold sewold writes: This is so retro it's back in! Looks like a fantastic job and the colors are so clear and clean looking. The mirrored image is nice to see the back and front together!
Posted: 9:20 am on August 7th

FabricKate FabricKate writes: Wow - a message from Claire Shaeffer - that means so much to me (I have made a couple of your jackets in the past). Many thanks!
Posted: 2:33 am on July 24th

Claire_Shaeffer Claire_Shaeffer writes: Congratulations! Your dress is fabulous!Claire
Posted: 12:24 pm on July 22nd

Melaniemac Melaniemac writes: Amazing job! I've always wanted to do this same thing, but never had the courage. What an inspiration.
Posted: 5:40 am on July 16th

ElenaYDesigns ElenaYDesigns writes: I think your dress looks just great. I remember being a fan of Mondrian way back when!
Posted: 9:32 pm on July 14th

FabricKate FabricKate writes: Hi Mignsew. The dress is seamed, not appliqued.

Actually it was quite easy to make up. I drew straight chalk lines 2cm apart on 5cm wide torn strips (along the grain) of dark navy linen, and joined them to the colour blocks, on to which I put a seam allowance.

The back zip is placed slightly off CB in order to run between a navy stripe and the white and is stitched in two different colours so it nearly invisible.

Hope this helps!
Posted: 5:21 am on July 1st

Mignsews Mignsews writes: This is just stunningly fantastic. How did you get the individual lines on the dress-are they actually pattern pieces or were they appliqued on after construction? I would love to see a step-by-step post about making this dress!
Posted: 10:51 am on June 30th

JetSetSewing JetSetSewing writes: Great job--looks authentic! Maybe the original didn't have darts because the Twiggy-type models didn't have boobs back then LOL.
Posted: 7:49 pm on June 20th

Wild_Lily Wild_Lily writes: love it
Posted: 10:05 pm on June 7th

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