December 17, 2014

Christmas Dress

So the girl who thought she would end up married to her sewing machine with fourteen cats has a boyfriend...the first in 6 years.  And although it gives me nervous, stomach eating butterflies, it is also really exciting.

Anyway...he is in the Air force and invited me to a Christmas party.  So of course I couldn't just go out to buy a dress!  I had to design one.  I had three qualifications that rather warred with each other as I attempted to draw up the design.  1. I wanted a corset 2. I wanted to be classy, not sexy and 3. I wanted sleeves.

There won't be many construction photos in this post, but I did want to talk a little about the making of and problems.

To alleviate the sexiness I decided upon a 17th century inspired corset.  My bust is flattened and raised, but doesn't pillow out the top.  I included straps in my corset design, but still am wavering on how I want to do the sleeves.  There are just so many options that completely change the look depending on which one I go for.

I draped the corset pattern on my dressform and made a mockup and then a pattern.

I finished the corset on Sunday, hand stitching on the bias tape binding.  I tried it on last night and was dismayed.  It fits.

Which seems silly to be dismayed about because shouldn't I WANT it to fit?!  Well...yes...and no.
I want it to fit, but I also wanted it to squeeze me in.  There is no point to a heavily boned corset if it doesn't modify my shape at all.

So I might be making some very sad darts to alleviate this problem.  It will ruin the perfection of the corset because right now it looks pretty dang wonderful...but it might fit better.  It will depend on how the corset works with the skirt.

Another problem I have encountered is pleating for the skirt.

There are SO many different kinds of pleats.  Box, cartridge, knife, inverted, etc.  They each give a different look.  For the right look on this skirt I think I want cartridge pleats, but I didn't anticipate that I would be doing cartridge pleats before I bought the fabric.  I do not have enough fabric for cartridge pleats.   And also I have never attempted them before.  It might be a mistake to try cartridge pleats for the first time with expensive, 100% silk fabric.

But my fingers are crossed in hopeful anticipation.  My next post will have some pictures of the corset as well as the skirt and its construction.

Thanks for reading!