Skip to main content

Sheath dresses, everywhere

I'm taking a break from my planned sewing to sew shift cotton dresses. Yes, you heard me. I took some sewing lessons with Beth from Sunny Gal Studio last time I was in California (already 6 weeks ago !). We spent almost all the time covering tailoring for a coat I'll be making throughout the summer - nope, still haven't started on it, 6 weeks later - but we also looked at sheath dresses, very quickly before we were done..

I left the lessons with an initial muslin, which had a bunch of things altered, and promised I'd transfer everything and try again on my own. Which I did, although it's much harder to perfect fit on your own.


This is the second version of the dress, and fitting wise it's getting closer. The first version hasn't been photographed yet.


The front looks decent, or almost decent.


There's still some gaping in the neckline, I have to take out maybe 6/8" out of it. I also want to move the shoulders in a bit. But otherwise it's fine.

The back however, is not so fine, and you can see it in this side picture.


There's still a LOT of extra height in the back, and that's after I already took out 1" with Beth and a further 1.5" on my own. Somehow it keeps coming back... I think what I'm doing is right, but in any case, it's strange there's so much extra. You can also see it in the pure back photos, despite the super busy print:



All right, now leaving aside short back length issues, may I say how much I LOVE this fabric. It's pure cotton that my mother brought back from Thailand. It came in a tube (ends sewed together), and I'm told that that's the typical sarong fabric. It's very very pretty, and you can see how I used the print in the front. I was very careful with cutting.

For this dress, I used an all-in-one facing which I drafted myself. Let me tell you - lessons with Beth are great! I learnt so much, and I certainly have a better handle on sewing together different types of curves. I mean most of what I learnt I'll apply when I make the coat, but even now, I can tell I'm sewing better.

For the hem, I wanted to keep the border print, but since this isn't a drindl I had to turn in part of the hem. There's still enough left of the border, and it more or less matches so that's pretty good.

What do you think? I think I'm getting closer with this pattern, but I still need to tinker with it a bit. I'm in the process of ordering tracing paper so I can play with it a bit more.

Comments

  1. That dress is so cute! what a great use of the fabric. and thanks for the nice words. The neckline fit looks perfect from here. and I think it looks really good, perfect summer sheath dress.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Beth! I really like it, and plan to make a few more :)

      Delete
  2. I think your dress looks great! It fits well and the fabric is so pretty.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

How to make silk bias binding

I promised this tutorial a while ago, but was too busy with work to get to it. This tutorial will focus on how to iron and fold the binding, rather than how to cut it. I have three links to good tutorials about how to do the correct cutting.


Here goes: a tutorial for properly making bias binding. Apologies for picture quality, I was using my phone.

Tools needed:
* silk square for the bias, sewing machine and scissors to make the continuous bias strip that will be ironed into place
* a 2-inch (5cm) wide piece of cardboard
* some sort of vaporiser, filled with water
* bias tape maker - for these pictures, I used a Clover which makes 1/2" binding (starts with 1" strips), but if I were to do this again, I'd use the one which makes a 1" binding (out of 2" strips)

Naming:
* left-side: bias strip not yet passed through the bias maker
* right-side: bias strip which has been folded by the bias maker



Steps:

1. Cut bias strips out of your silk square. I like this tutorial…

A new shirt

I made a white shirt. I cut this out sometime in late September, and I used McCalls 6035 again. I managed to finish it around Christmas. I wanted a nice white shirt, with a bit of a twist, so I added grey embelishments to it.


I am very pleased with how the embelishments turned out. I did a few things:
- embroidered the collar with French knots
- added grey/white twill tape to the sleeve seams
- used mother-of-pearl-with-grey-tint buttons

The effects are subtle, but they are there and I like them.



I embroidered the collar using two shades of grey, in a "burst" pattern. I tried to be relatively consistent about density of the French knots, but I think a bit of difference isn't very bad.


The collar was the first thing I finished, and it stayed there for a long time, until I found the time to get back to sewing.


I used a lot more interfacing on the collar than I normally do, and I think it shows. The buttons and tape on sleeves were added later and they're not very speci…

Birds dress

Just another sheath dress from me today, from my TNT pattern. This one is all about the fabric:

I got this bird fabric from Plush Addict, and it seems to have been the last fabric purchase pre-baby (Cosmo - Nihonkai - Budgies On Oxford Cloth if you are interested), so didn't cut into it for a long time. In May, after finishing my coat, I finally took the plunge.


The pattern, as I said, was my TNT sheath pattern, pretty simple. The biggest challenge with this dress was fabric placement, I didn't want any weird bird cuts at seams, nor did I want any other sort of weird placement. 
As i had 2 meters of this fabric, I thought I should be able to get all that, so I spent a lot of time moving fabric pieces around, until I got it. I'm pretty happy with myself, the seams meld as much as possible, I'm particularly proud of the center back:


Construction wise, this dress has 6 darts and 5 seams, so it is all relatively straightforward. I stabilized the neckline and armholes with…