I would like to quickly apologise before today's post. I am currently fighting a series of colds and a mini bout of flu, so there is the possibility that this post may not be as good as my usual ones. My head is so fuzzy at the moment!
Today I shall be taking a look at Florence's Medicine Chest by Baby the Stars Shine Bright. This series includes 6 dresses (2 non-print), a skirt, 2 blouses, 3 hair accessories, tights, an apron and a few pieces of jewellery.
First up is the Rosalind JSK. The bodice seems fairly well fitted, but I think the overall bodice shape could have been done better. The straps are a reasonable width. They could have possibly been a little bit wider, but they seem supportive enough. I like that the straps are lined with gold braid and some good quality lace. I like the shape of the lace on the straps. However, I do feel the strap lace looks a bit overdone with the lace running along the neckline as well. I feel the lace looks messy on the neckline and it needs to be toned down a bit. I also don't like the way the neckline lace carries on underneath the arms. There is a large waist bow, which wouldn't have looked too bad if the bow on the chest area wasn't there. It looks a bit overloaded having both bows there. The waist bow has a pretty shape and it sits nicely on the dress, but I am happy to see that the waist bow is detachable. I think the dress looks a lot more balanced with it detached. The chest ribbon details have been done very neatly. Hopefully this line of ribbon wont sit too tightly across the wearer's chest. I love the shape of the bow that sits in the centre. The one thing I don't understand is why there are mini tassels dangling from the centre of the bow. They appear nowhere else on the dress and what do they even have to do with the theme? The back of the panel has a panel of shirring, which has been topped neatly with a ribbon corset. The stock photos show the skirt has a reasonable amount of volume to it and it flares outwards enough. The skirt is topped with these triangles of criss-crossed ribbon, which I think looks terrible. At least Baby didn't use velveteen like AP did for Whip Jacquard, so it is a bit of an improvement. These ribbon details could have possibly worked here if they had been placed a bit further away from each other. This detail doesn't really affect how well you can see the print though, as Baby have decided to reverse the print on this one dress (something that they have done a few times before) so the border print is actually on the bodice. My issue with this is that there are a lot of details on the bodice which conceal the more detailed border part of the print. I also don't feel that the non-border part of the print is interesting enough to have it all over the skirt instead. The bottom hem is then finished off with a line of stripy ribbon and 2 stripy ruffles. The ruffles sit neatly and have been attached to the dress well.
Next up is the Louisa JSK. The bodice looks well fitted and the shape of the bodice looks interesting. I love the heart shaped neckline, and the gold braid and stripy ruffle really emphasise its shape. I also think the use of stripes here helps to balance out the use of stripes in the print. The straps are a good width, although they seem to be made of lace. I would have preferred a less flimsy choice of material for the straps, perhaps with a lace overlay instead. The lacy bows that top the straps also look a bit too bulky and add extra volume to the shoulders. The waist area is topped with a belt made from stripy ribbon. I feel the belt makes the dress a little too cluttered. This belt is detachable and I think it looks better without it, although it does make the stripy bows at the bottom look a bit unbalanced with it gone. The bodice features 2 lines of wide lace running up it. The lace is of reasonable quality and has an interesting design to it, but I think the lace is too wide. I feel the lace would compliment the other bodice details a lot better if it was thinner. The chest area is topped with a large lacy bow. I do feel the bow looks a bit messy and it needs to be shaped better. The use of gold braid around the edges of the bow looks messy too. It is also a little bit too big. However, it does sit really well on the dress and it doesn't look droopy at all. The back offers a panel of shirring which has again been topped with a ribbon corset. The waist ties have been made from lacy material, so it really matches well with the use of lace on the rest of the dress. The stock photos show the skirt has plenty of volume and it flares out beautifully. The overall shape of the skirt is lovely. The printed part of the skirt is kept simple, so the print is displayed really well. The bottom hem features a scalloped hemline with 2 lines of lace underneath. I don't usually like scalloping, but on this dress I think it works because it has been kept subtle. The bows topping the bottom hem also help to soften the scallops. The lace used could have been a bit better in quality, but I don't think it looks too bad.
Here we have the Doris JSK. The bodice material looked a bit baggy in some of the stock photos and I think the bodice shape is too basic. The lace along the neckline helps to soften the really straight line a bit, but it doesn't appeal to me. I think the straps are a good width and look quite supportive, but they could do with some thin lace to liven them up a little. The waist area is topped with the same detachable stripy belt and once again, I feel the dress looks too cluttered with it on. For this dress, the bodice material has been broken up in to panels instead of using one continuous piece. This would have been okay, except the print does not line up properly along the seams. It looks a bit unprofessional. I also dislike how the seams have been left bare. The bodice features a double ruffle with some buttons in the centre. The buttons have a pretty design but maybe there needs to be one fewer buttons. I feel the material used for the ruffles could maybe have been gathered a bit more. It looks a little bit flat in some of the pictures and yet in other stock photos it seems to stick out a bit more. One thing I am certain of is that I don't like the double ruffle teamed with the 2 large bows at the bases of the straps. Either detail could have worked, but maybe not together. Or perhaps the strap bows could have been made a lot smaller and that would help balance it a bit better. The back has a panel of shirring but bizarrely, Baby have decided to use different solid coloured material for this shirring. I feel this makes the shirring stick out more and it doesn't look too attractive. Even the ribbon corset topping the shirring doesn't do much to conceal it. The stock photos show that the skirt has some volume but perhaps it could do with a bit more. The skirt shape looks a bit dull. I also feel the main printed fabric to lace ratio on the skirt is a bit off. The printed part of the skirt needs to be longer. The main part of the skirt is kept simple, so the print is displayed excellently. The bottom hem is then finished off with an over-stitched stripy ruffle and 2 layers of lace. I would have preferred the ruffle to be under-stitched, as I feel this would have looked neater. The bottom line of lace is also far too wide. It droops downwards a lot and lacks shape. I think it would have been better to have had more lines of thinner lace or perhaps keep the 2 lines of lace, but make them narrower.
This is the OP. The bodice seems fairly well fitted. However, I find the way the bodice has been set out (especially the sleeves) looks a bit strange. The shoulders are made of lacy material, so with the contrasting printed fabric, it gives the illusion of the dress being an off-the-shoulder design. It could have possibly worked if there weren't so many bulky details. It is too fussy and over-complicated. I don't even know where to begin talking about it! Firstly, I think the dress could have looked better if the shoulders were the main dress fabric instead of the lacy fabric. The wide line of lace running across the chest area and over the sleeves needs to go. The bulky bows and the criss-crossed ribbon going down the sides of the sleeves also need to go. The one part I don't entirely hate is the lacy bell shaped sleeves, but even then I am not too fond of the lace used! The bodice features a ribbon corset. It helps to break up the empty space on the main bodice, but given how heavy with detail the rest of the dress is, a bit of simplicity may have actually been refreshing. The chest area features a bow, which is quite big, and I am not fond of the shape either. And again, this bow has random tassels dangling from it. Thankfully, this bow is detachable. I really wish more of the details were detachable... The chest area on the lacy part is topped with a gold cross made up of gold braid, which just looks messy. If that wasn't enough detail, there are also stripy straps which tie in to big bows on the shoulders. The back of the dress offers no shirring, so size flexibility is limited. The stock photos show that the skirt seems to have plenty of volume and it flares outwards loads. There is the potential to create a very pretty full shape. From the front and back views, the print is displayed beautifully.
However, on the sides of the skirt there is yet more details! There is yet more lace and ribbons and bows. If it was me, I would remove these side skirt details all together. I absolutely hate them.
The bottom hem is then finished off with multiple lines of lace. At least it matches the very lacy theme on the rest of the dress. But in my opinion, this dress is a messy OTT nightmare.
And finally, here is the print close up. This series comes in ivory, pink, bright green and brown. All 4 colours work nicely with the print. As for the print itself, it is set out quite nicely and it looks good on the dresses. I like that the print is quite an original idea and there is quite a lot of different ways you could interpret the medical theme. I especially like the bottles. I do feel details are a bit sparse on the table though. The case on the table looks a bit like a laptop as well! I like the 2 figures in the print, but I feel like there needs to be more of them. The non-border parts of the print with the labels and also the stripy part seem to be well balanced on most of the dress designs. Out of all the dresses, I would say that the Louisa JSK probably has the best balance of the labelled boxes, stripes and border print.
So I do feel this is a really interesting print but the dress designs leave a lot to be desired. I feel this series had a lot of potential but after taking a closer look, there are a lot of things that are not to my personal taste. So this is not a series that I will be buying. If I were to go for this series, I would pick the Louisa JSK in ivory or pink.