Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Dress Factor - The Elizabeth Dress

So here it is.

I need some photos of me wearing it. but I need my hubby's help for that and he's at work!

This is my entry for the Dress Factor - a competition run by The Sewing Directory and Abakhan Fabrics.

The process was quite simple, but sewing all those curved seams was a bit of a nightmare.
I began with a self drafted close fitting bodice and added a semi circle skirt before drawing in the style lines. It was important to allow the lines to go through, or very close to the ends of and darts so that the pattern pieces would lie flat. I did have to cut one piece along the original side seam, as it would not lie flat enough.

The seams were marked with with plenty of match points to enable accurate matching on the complex curves.

I decided to underline the dress, as the cotton fashion fabric was very light and the seam allowances would have shown through. I used a light weight curtain lining from my stash. this would give a crisp finish and help the skirt swing without need of an underskirt.

The pattern pieces were cut from the lining and fashion fabric at the same time and basted together. I used machine basting. as it would also act as stay stitching.

 The seams were sewn, matching notches and clipped/ notched and pressed open using a tailors ham.

Once all seams were sewn and the invisible zip was sewn into the side the seams needed neatening. I had decided not to line the dress and that meant catch stitching all the seam allowances to the underlining. = very long job. About 10 hours hand sewing.

Once this was complete the neckline and armholes were finished with a bias facing cut from the white fabric. It was machined to the neck/ armhole line and turned under and fell stitched in place.

I'm very happy with the finish, but If I did this style of dress again, I would pink the seam allowances and fully line the dress.


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