Saturday, 12 April 2008

Winter Indulgence SWAP dress

This dress is the final item in my Winter Indulgence SWAP. I had planned this dress quite a while ago, but left it to last, as it is more of a project than some of the other items and I did not want to be pressured when making it. I wanted only to make it for the SWAP if I felt I had plenty of time. I finished an alternate item earlier in the week, so that I could work on this dress calmly and with enjoyment. The pattern is McCalls 5177 in linen with silk lining. I have changed the dress a bit from the pattern. The skirt and sleeves are cut on the bias, and the sleeves have a lower cap and are considerably wider.

The pattern calls for lining the bodice only. I have underlined the sleeves with silk cut on the bias, I used the excellent tutorial presented on Laura lo's blog to do this, and was very pleased with the result.

After finishing the dress, I decided to hand stitch ivory coloured beads to the vertical front bodice seams, and to the neck back. I used an invisible zipper to close the dress.

The insert is smocked, and contains much more fabric that allowed for in the pattern, and I have used a gathered panel as the lining for this bodice section, to maintain the elasticity of the smocking in the completed garment. I blocked the smocking to a similar width to the pattern lining piece, then drew around the edges of this piece, on top of the smocking, with tailors' chalk. I then sewed a fine zig zag stitch all along this chalk line, before trimming the smocked piece to size. The smocking was then treated as flat fabric, although I was careful to maintain straight, tight pleats when stitching the bias band at the top, and the waist seam at the bottom of the pleating.
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Shannon said...

Very pretty dress!

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

This is an amazing dress! I can't believe you used smocking and made a wonderfully wearable adult dress!!! I would have never thought to use it this way!

Alexandra said...

Oh, Karen, what a beautiful dress! Your smocking is to die for! Wow!

Ann's Fashion Studio said...

Such a beautiful dress! Nice work!

MaryPat R said...

It looks beautiful on you. Your workmanship is amazing and the style isn't juvenile at all.