Saturday 3 September 2016

A Dress for Next Summer

Nice and cheerful for a summer dress, which probably won't be worn until next year.  It is a cotton poplin, chosen by my daughter, who has a weakness for tropical designs.  She wants a fitted, straight-skirted dress.  Easier said than done, especially when she tells me "I want a zip."  If she knew how much psychological damage those four words have caused me, especially when thinking up a dress with lining.  I am a zipphobic and have decided to conquer the many-toothed demon.

Work so far has consisted of making a rough cut dress from an old duvet cover to get the size and position of the darts, then making a toile from calico to get a good fit.  I only stuck pins in my daughter twice.  No blood.  She accused me of direct voodoo, with no doll.  Then I unpicked the toile, ironed the pieces and laid them on tissue paper to draw the paper pattern.

The whole process has taken days, but the aim is to have a perfectly fitting dress for her so I can make another when she isn't here.  Had I used a commercial pattern I would have had to spend an age making adjustments, so I decided to draft my own.

Will I have the dress made before she goes back to university for the autumn term?  Probably not.


  1. I am in awe of your drafting skills. I can see a dress from a pattern but couldn't begin to develop a pattern from nothing. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished dress. I hope you will post a picture when you get it finished!

    1. It's a slow process, Bernie, but adjustments can take even longer. She is built on a small scale - I have managed to cut the dress from a 42 inch length of 44 inch wide fabric.

  2. have you thought about inserting an invisible zip. it goes unto the back seam before you do anything else and I think it is the eeriest to do. there are instructions on utube to help you.

    1. Yes, that is what I am going to do. The big mind bender for me was thinking out how to do it with a lining and what order to do all the seams.
      Crikey, should I be worried? We have had a near miss voodoo moment during a fitting session, and now you tell me that an invisible zip is the eeriest to do. Good job it isn't a black dress.



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