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It Has Begun

April 15, 2014

Birthday Dress V1353After several months of pondering and planning, I’ve finally started working on my birthday dress. I’m using Vogue 1353, which I’ve decided to leave sleeveless, and this Italian cotton I brought home from my trip to the Garment District. This photo is a little better than the original one, but the print still looks much splotchier here than it does in person. It’s also not nearly so wrinkly–I had just pulled it out of the dryer.
Birthday Dress muslinI didn’t make muslins for my garments in the past, but I’m really trying to improve the fit of my projects now. I made two muslins of the bodice for this dress, and I’m really glad that I did. Out of the envelope, the bust dart was pointing much too high, and I needed to add 2″ to the length in order to hit my natural waist.
Birthday Dress piecesI spent the better part of Sunday cutting and marking the pieces. This has to be my least favorite part of the clothing construction process, and I’m pretty slow at it. There are so many pleats in this design that I had a lot to mark–luckily, I had Buffy and Angel to keep me company.
Birthday Dress bodiceThe bodice and skirt are now assembled, so tonight’s project will be attaching them at the waist and installing the invisible zipper. I hope this zip does turn out to be invisible. With fabric like this and the limited selection of my local store, it was difficult to find a color that worked. I ended up with a gray zipper (which matches my lining) and I cut out the dress so that the center back will fall mostly in the purple and green parts of the print.

Unfortunately, tonight will be my last night working on the dress this week. I’m taking the bus over to Sweetie’s, so I can’t bring my sewing supplies with me. Here’s hoping the rest of the construction goes as smoothly as it has been so far–I want to wear this dress on my birthday next Thursday!


4 Comments leave one →
  1. April 25, 2014 12:12 pm

    It’s looking good!
    After seeing your bodice cut out I’ve realised I’ve gone wrong with mine – I’ve only made the bodice so far as it’s still in the muslin stage. I folded the pleats, and basted them along the top but didn’t sew them in place between the dots. Mine looks ok and but I think you’ve done it the correct way.
    PS liking the red trousers, I made that pattern last year, we must have similar tastes!!

    • April 25, 2014 7:17 pm

      I don’t think you’re as wrong as you say! The stitching that you see on the bodice is just basting to keep it nice and flat. I left it in until I was “done” with the dress (more on that in a post) and ready to wear it so that the pleats would be pressed in very well and the fabric would hopefully hold onto them.

      The skirt is a different story, though. The pattern calls for you to sew those pleats together on the inside, and they don’t open up until the hips. Hope that makes sense!


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