In kitschykraftkitten's post here http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=119224.0 (sorry, don't know how to embed that in the text in this forum), I mentioned wanting to try to make that same dress out of a home deco fabric, one of those faux vinyls. Well, before attempting that design, I decided to try a simpler, semi-test garment. And here it is!
I wanted something simple which would show off the texture without details that would create too many layers of the thick fabric. I chose a kimono, as this crappy picture with a random scarf at the waist shows.
I already had the sewing pattern (Simplicity 5839) which I made in XL, omitting the lining. Because a lot of pattern-makers seem to have trouble proportioning larger-sized patterns, I was initially a little concerned about the sleeve openings... but then I realized that they are not supposed to go all the way up the arms like a traditional blouse, but are instead further down the arms. (I have problems regularly with RTW garments being too small in the upper arms.) The outer corners of the sleeves really are radiused as they should be... Just doesn't show in the crappy picture. Did I mention the picture is crappy? I did? Carrying on then.
I chose a black/brown printed faux leather lightweight upholstery fabric from the clearance table (ultimately <$3/yd), with a fairly dense, plain knit backing. After folding it and flipping it around a little at the store, I decided it would be sufficiently floppy to make a garment, light enough to actually wear, while stiff and glossy enough to at least look like it was trying to be leather.
Cutting was easy and no-ravel, and the stitching went well with longer stitch-lengths and a Teflon foot where needed.
I intend to wear it with either a large mesh/elastic waist cincher or a corset (to be named later), and I do believe it will be wearable, at least for a couple of hours (but this is as yet untested). I was considering making some belting out of regular webbing covered in the same faux leather, terminating in some big silver buckles, and attaching 2 or 3 of those to the kimono, but I'm reconsidering putting anything permanent on it. I think I'd like to be able to wear different obi-substitutes as the mood strikes me. (As if I'm going to be wearing this thing every weekend. In this weather?!)
Suggestions on ways to finish the garment are certainly welcome, as are questions if I skipped over some aspect of the fabric you're curious about.
Long-windedly as always,