Thursday, December 20, 2012

Dotted Chiffon Party Dress - Part 1

Two weeks ago my cousin got married. As is typical for evening winter weddings, everyone was decked out to the nines. While I have plenty of cute wedding-appropriate dresses for summer, I had absolutely nothing that would work for a winter event. With a week to go and a limited budget, the race was on to see if I could sew something in time, or would be compelled to pick a nice top and skirt from my existing garments.

My grandmother assisted me in picking out this flower dotted chiffon. It has a bit of a texture to it, which made it slightly easier to sew with than normal chiffon.

I drafted a basic wrap dress bodice pattern from another dress pattern I'd recently made for myself.

The skirt was two pieces, with a complete overlap in the front.

Prior to sewing, I finished all the edges with my serger to keep the chiffon from unraveling.

I then pinned all the pieces on to see what alterations would be necessary. The front darts are an unusual shape, but they worked! I pinned them in place, then used a slip-stitch to sew them down.

The back darts were sewn the same way.

I wanted to do arm cuffs...

...but I couldn't get them tight enough to stay up without cutting off circulation. I ended up just sewing a casing for black elastic at the bottom of the gathered sleeves.

Sewing the bodice together.

The front 'v' was a bit larger than I wished, so I decided to add a ruffled edge.

It worked out quite well, I think!

Because chiffon is so slippery, I needed to go back and slightly gather the back edge and a few places along the bust 'v' to eliminate gaping.

The final step was trimming and rehemming the skirt hem.

For the wedding, I wore this over a simple black sheath dress I already had.

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