You may recall these green/black Renaissance dresses I'm making are meant to be matching. As such, the pictures of the garment construction up until the little differences DO start to appear is a little confusing. I didn't even try to post photos on Facebook, although I did keep Kate up to date with progress pictures.
Sewing this chemise the second time around took waaaaay less time. This could also be because I already had the pieces cut out, but I'm sticking to my initial sense of accomplishment.
Similarly, the underskirt took almost no time at all. Granted, the pleats aren't even, and I didn't even use a style of skirt closure that requires me to get even close to Kate's waist measurement. If I ever sell these skirts on Etsy, this is how I'm making the closure. So, so easy and can cover a variety of waist measurements! Plus, I didn't even melt any fabric with my iron this time around!
Part of the reason the underskirt took less time was because this time around I knew exactly how much fabric I could use for it and how much would need to be left over for the color blocking on the bodice and skirt. I didn't take any pictures of the construction process, and the bodice even looks the same as my own, even if the decoration on the sari is different.
What I didn't get last time was a progress picture of my cheater's method of putting in even-ish box pleats. Having a dress dummy around for this part of the construction saved my bacon. And sanity. Also, because of the way Kate's sari was embroidered she actually has a little more fabric in her skirt than me, but I did have to do some extra hemming and the pattern at the waistband meant the seam allowance on the bodice/skirt seam has no extra wiggle room. I serged the inside edges just to be safe.
And that's all she wrote folks!
No, I did actually get her dress done and delivered. Funny story about the sleeves though: I ran out of wunder-under for the black bands on her sleeves. (Wunder under is a sort of iron-activated web of glue to fuse larger pieces of fabric together.) 3M heavy duty spray adhesive to the rescue! Seriously, it worked almost as well.
And of course there were slight adjustments to be done to the shoulder seam, but otherwise it fit pretty well. Kate and I were also able to work on the headpieces to be worn under the black hats for this dress, and for the outfits she's designing.
I was relieved because now I can concentrate on Ryan's outfit and...my dress commission! I'm excited, so look for future posts about the dress for Ms. De La Cruz. :)
Obsession, Part 3
The next thing I was a bit nervous about with these dresses was how to divide up the green and black fabric for cutting.
Cutting for the underskirt really meant I needed to cut out the overdress at the same time, since the overdress had accent bands of black, and the underskirt would be cut from the remainders. But, those remainders had to utilize the green stripes at one end… And the overdress skirt, bodice, and sleeves would be out of the same green fabric so I had to cut the bodice and sleeves before praying there would be enough left for a full skirt.
Nail biting work, I tell you! But it all worked out!
The underskirt really was the work of only one evening. Sure, it’s pleated, but that’s not an even pleat. It won’t ever be seen. And the waistband has two ties sewn on to it for an adjustable waist measurement. I got more of a response on Facebook than I thought I would, and Ryan really loved the fabric. He asked if it was the main skirt…
As a side note, this black fabric is “art silk” instead of real silk. Meaning it’s polyester. This particular stuff is lightweight, but frays and fringes if you look at it sideways. I’ve had issues working with it this entire time. Totally NOT worth using again, even if I did save $20 overall in fabric costs for Kate and I. And, if I weren’t using a hoop skirt I would never let my legs sweat directly against this stuff.
Also, I accidentally turned my iron up to the “cotton” setting to get some fold marks out of the waistband material… and promptly melted about 6 inches of the waistband onto my iron. Fortunately it was 6 inches I didn’t need, but at the time I felt like crying!
The next post will be on to the bodice and overdress, which took 3 full days of an extended weekend.
Twins each with half a brain in reality; the other half displayed here!