Thursday, March 15, 2007

A Design Idea From Ready-To-Wear

I ran across two dresses with a couple of neat design ideas. Here's the first one:

Click on it to see the detail, and you will notice that it is actually a very simple dress that can be made using any basic dress pattern. Plain and simple front and back bodice, buttoned up the back, full gathered skirt. What makes this a Look Twice dress? The fabric is gorgeous, but the real attention getter is the gathered trim at the waist and hemline. Easy.

Here's how I would do it.

I would measure the bottom of the bodice, all the way around, after it is attached to the skirt section. Multiply by 2.5--this is how long the ruffle piece needs to be cut. I would cut strips on the straight grain twice the desired finished width of the ruffle. For example, if I wanted the finished ruffle to be 1 3/4" wide (which is probably about right), I would cut it 3 1/2" wide. If the bodice measurement were 28 inches, I would need a piece 70 inches long and 3 1/2 inches wide.

I would measure around the bottom of the dress at the hemline and do the same thing. 2.5 x hem width by 3 1/2".

Then I would press the strip WRONG sides together (yes, like bias tape--thanks, Candle), with the cut edges meeting in the center. (I would probably also baste those edges down after pressing. I'm a great believer in basting.) Use fancy thread and satin stitch along both long edges. I know, I know, this would take some time, but the results would be worth it.

Then I would use my ruffler attachment and stitch down the middle of the strip. Sew to bottom of bodice and bottom of hem and you're done!


CandlebyNight said...

Grace, when you say "Then I would press the strip right sides together, with the cut edges meeting in the center." Do you mean you would fold it like bias tape? I have some fabic, that I've had for Y E A R S waiting for just the right thing and I think this dress is it!

Juliane said...

I made a boo boo in my post, but I've changed it now.

CandlebyNight said...

Thank you Grace. I have a question. I really want to try this. I would like to know if you would mind if I take this picture off your blog and post it on mine with the fabric I am using to create this dress. I'm soooo excited about it. I've had the fabric for 5 1/2 years wondering what to do with it. Let me know! I would be happy to post the link to you blog and give you credit for the idea.

Juliane said...

Please do! One of my reasons for starting a blog is to share ideas and techniques. I'm TICKLED that you want to try it. If you can, post lots of pics of the process for all of us to see.

CandlebyNight said...

woohoo, running to blog now. Already started the dress.