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Sunday, February 24, 2013

The green dress saga

So remember the plan of awesome? It *sorta* happened for 12th night. I'm still working on the sleeves and fixing some stuff but it kinda happened. Here's the lay down. The first thing I did (after some ironing, gathering interlinings and the  like) was cut out my pattern ala Noelle from Adventures of a Wannabe Seamstress. Noelle always gets this awesome fit on her dresses, and has fit a lot of different body types so last spring I took a jaunt to her house and begged for a bodice pattern. She of course, in gracious fashion obliged. 
Here's where it gets kinda odd. The straps from the back. Which was working my nerves. Of all the blogs, tutorials and the like that I've poured over during my years of Italian, I have never, to my recollection, recall seeing a bodice with straps coming completely from the back. It just.. didn't make sense to me, not to have them finished and pretty, right?? RIGHT?!?!?! I mean I know she's a laurel and she has like this amazing bodice-fu that makes them all look gorgeous, and I'm sure she knows what shes doing but but but but...
But time was of the essence so I started getting that pattern cut, and meanwhile sewed some boning channels into my interlining and my felt/flannel padding. I spend a good good part of an entire day/afternoon working on it (home sick with a kiddo)and voila. I have this bodice. This AMAZINGLY well fit bodice.. forget my fatness, forget my uncertainty, I have a BODICE!! It's smooth, it fits well, the straps are amazing and OMG, look at how smooth and unwrinkled it is!!
I sew on some rings (yeah the eyelet part is something I'm gonna have to work on, cause the boning was in the way on one side, and blah blah blah blah.. I used rings.. sue me) take a few shots to send over to the Bestie Hastings because Provo is too far a drive to just "Pop in" (though we do) and TADA!!

 Next up its time to do something I've never even attempted on my own before.. Hello cartridge pleats. First problem however, is that my skirt is not as wide as preferred. I normally have at least 3 full panels of fabric to make up my skirt. Because I didn't buy this fabric, it was gifted down to me, its not as much as I would buy, couple that with the fact that it has a pattern and I try to match up as much as possible and we have wasted fabric that can't go into a skirt. So I think in the end I had like 120 inches or so of skirt. That's not all together a small figure I know.. But when your waist is in the upper 40's... it makes for a not so full skirt. Either way, I got out a marker, started making dots on my plaid flannel as a guide and started stitching.
Front, much better
Back, kinda loose
My pleats aren't as tightly packed int he back as I would prefer but still.. I DID it! I have a cartridge pleated skirt and man am I happy I did it.. I know a few things I'll change next time (like the finishing of it and more panels) but its a LOVELY way to attach a skirt and once I got going, it really was not difficult in the least bit.

Hemmed up the skirt (which is too long by about 10 full inches dammit) and this is where our saga ends for 12th night.  I wish I could tell you I had the presence of mind to have the boyfriend  ex (sigh) take pictures of me in my fabulous dress that day, but I didn't. There isn't even a good picture of me full front. What I have is this.. I wore my green zimarra over it for some reason, and ended up taking it off when I was hanging out. Can you see that hem!! Lord..

 Fast forward to the end of February and I have decided to finish the dress to wear to Coronation next weekend. I worked some on the sleeves a few times during the last month and sorta got a pattern I think would work. The best thing I can say about these sleeves is that the seam is actually in the back, so completely correct. Also, their lattern sleeves, with a CUT pane instead of strips made and attached. It took a little doing but I got the pattern made. So I took my normal sleeve pattern and put some cuts into it right where i figured I'd want the slashes, then I spread those out a bit and cut my lining and fashion fabric from that, just for a little extra in the shoulder for the splits. Is this correct? No idea. Did I do it this way because I was trying something out, you sure betcha. 
Then I started attaching some pleated sections of my silk batiste to the lining very loosely so I had enough fabric to pull thru. Truth is, I don't really care for that, and the puffs aren't as big as I'd prefer so now I'm going back and just going to baste sections in place for the slashes. 
I'd been working on pearling my trim for a bit, I had this idea of how to add it and now looking at it i think it looks okay but I'm not sure if I want to take the time to actually put it on -- since then I've actually added a few pearls to my sleeves and might just leave the trim off.. though ya never know. 

In any case I need to fix the hem, and a small issue with the straps, and the sleeves before this Friday. We'll see how it happens.