My little sister is getting married in August and they want a simple wedding, just to the court house then a small intimate BBQ at home. She's been trying on wedding dress and sent pictures to us (she lives in England and we live in the US!) and has not been able to find one that works for her budget. So I wanted to make her a dress... If it is pretty and fit, then she can wear it. If not then, oh well.
I immediately chose Paris Party Dress by Rebecca Page Pattern as my basic to start. It is mostly because all of the dresses my sister tried on reminded me of this pattern. This pattern is so versatile and have many add on that you can do a lot with it. A simple top with A-line skirt. I'm thinking to have a lace lining short sleeve top with a knee-length skirt with tulle underneath. So here is my vision (not in Red, of course!)
Sewing the Muslin
For the muslin shirt, I chose these two fabrics from my stash: The white one is either a modal spandex or bamboo spandex from Knitpop scrap pack. These are amazingly stretchy and I love the off white color. The lace is from one of the clean out sale by Sincerely Rylee. I bought it impulsively since it was only $2/yard. I was going to destash it since I didn't know what use I will have with these white stretch lace. I had layered it on other knit but just feel like it doesn't really suit my style. When I knew I wanted to make this dress, I immediately knew this would be the right lace for it.
For the skirt, I used silk as the top layer. I meant to use some satin but the ones in the wedding section at Joann is quite expensive. Since I didn't know how it will turn out, I opted for the cheaper version from the regular Apparel section. I also bought some sateen to use as the lining fabric. This is not the fancy sateen like the Nani Iro Fuccra sold in our shop, it doesn't have a glossy or shiny side. As the matter of fact, after cutting the fabric I had a hard time figuring out which is the right or wrong side of the fabric. So it is fitting to be used as lining. And I bought some cheap tulle, with the current sales, it comes down to like $1.75/yard or so, to create the puffy effect like in the inspiration shown above.
Sewing the shirt is easy enough. This is just a typical T-shirt. There was a little confusion trying to layer the lace, but just following the instruction along (without questioning too much or trying to be my usually smart@ss self), it all works out. Now that I have a coverstitch machine, hemming is so much quicker and more enjoyable. I really like the shirt, but it is likely that I will re-do this to something else. Why? Had I forgot to mention that the white shades of the shirt and skirt do not match.
Sewing the skirt is another story! The original Paris Party Dress pattern is a pleated skirt with zipper. I used the pattern piece as is, but changed into gathering and elastic waist band instead. This is to ensure that it will fit my sister regardless of how mess up it could get. In addition to that, I also use the skirt Add on, with lining and petticoat. And I also added pockets!
I didn't anticipated how much fraying silk and sateen are... but they both sewing very nicely, especially sateen. On the other hand, gathering tulle is more difficult than I anticipated. A little thing I learn here: Loosen your tension and shorten your stitch length as little as you can. And instead of letting the tulle bunches up because you need the extra thread to adjust your gather.
Sunday 7/9 - So the box is on its way across the pond to England . We will wait to see!