Here is the second, and final post in making this more modern dress for my Dewdrop series. I talk about my ideas and how I made the skirt in the previous post which can be read here.
As per usual I started by draping the pattern on my dress form. I’d hoped to alter a pattern for this bodice but realized part way through that draping it would just be easier.
When I removed it from the dress form it looked like this! I had to iron it out before making the pattern. I still plan to make a tutorial on this process but i’ve been too distracted by making things to sit down and write it.
The end pattern looked like this. For this project I wanted to try something new, so I didn’t add seam allowances to the neckline. The understructure of this bodice was cut without seam allowances at the neck or waist, then my top fabric was draped over the understructure. This meant their was less bulk and made everything look smoother.
I used a pen and ruler to measure seam allowances to my top fabric later on.
Then I made my mock up! I was pretty happy with it, though it was a bit large in the bust.
There were two visible problems here, the first is that it was riding up, and the second is the shape of the garment, but I wasn’t worried because they will both be fixed when I add boning later on.
After making the pattern adjustments I started cutting out the bodice fabrics, which was quite the task since it has four layers!
Like the last bodice I made from this series, it has a base of twill and cotton sateen, with linen lining and a damask front.
I drew out all the boning channels onto my sateen layer and pinned them to the twill.
Each boning channel was sewn.
And then it was time for my least favorite step – cutting and tipping bones ;;
I used the same method from last time because it seemed to work really well. Each bone was cut with tin snips, then labeled with a letter that corresponds to a boning channel.
I used a dremel tool to soften any sharp edges, then tipped them with medical tape and dipped them in clear nail polish. I left them to dry overnight and by morning they were ready!
Though I still dislike this process I have to say i’m getting a lot better at it. It went much faster this time and the results are far better, if I keep improving maybe soon I won’t mind this step!
I assembled the base layer and added all the boning. I had a mix up and ended up with two “T”s and two “L”s that were very different sizes, but luckily everything slipped in just fine and I didn’t have to many any changes!
I covered all the edges in linen bias tape to ensure the bones wouldn’t poke out.
I also took a minute to assemble the lining and top fabric.
The top fabric was stitched down by hand onto the base layer.
Although the shape is symmetrical (the “horns” are the same size) my seams don’t line up. One seam cuts through the tip, where as the other is nearly a half inch off. Luckily it isn’t noticeable when worn, but it bothers me a lot!
After the base layer was attached to the top fabric I sewed in the eyelets.
Then the waistband was sewn on by hand – I worked so hard to make sure this lines up perfectly, and it does! So that pleases me a lot. Not enough to make up for the sloppy seams, but it’s close.
The skirt was sewn on and the lining was sewn in, both by hand. Then the other edge of the waistband was sewn down and the whole thing actually resembled a dress! To make sure the waistband could handle the slight curve I didn’t add interfacing to it, this means it looks pretty floppy and bad when laid flat, but when worn and under tension it looks fine.
Here you can see how uneven the seams are, but you can also see how well the pattern lines up on the front panels.
I sewed the final eyelets and tried it on! It’s a little more risque then I had expected but oh well, at least thanks to the boning it stays on really nicely. I like the shape it has, the conical-flat front bodice reminds me a lot of the first dress from this series, so that’s good!
It’s far from my favorite thing i’ve made, but considering it has twenty hours of time and $20 of material in it, I think it was worth making.
I took pictures without a wig for once and of course my hair is a big mess, please ignore that.
Related posts: Part One, Part Two, Photos of Completed Dress