Thursday, April 25, 2013

Spring Lace Dress

Hooray! I finally finished one of my Spring projects!  It was one of those sewing projects that I thought would only take me a weekend to finish.  A month I am.  There were a lot of "firsts" for this dress.  It was my first attempt at using a Burda Style pattern that I downloaded from the internet.  The initial taping of the pattern together was a pain. But I do like the fact that my paper (standard copy paper) is more durable and easy to re-use.

The dress was made from a cotton lace that ended up having a lot of stretch.  I pre-washed and dried it in the dryer and it still came out soft and held its shape.  I found the lace fabric at the 50% off table at Hart's Fabric in Santa Cruz.  (Score!) The lining is a very unusual bright pink cotton, and had a lovely weight to it (almost like a light linen), but it didn't stretch as much as the lace.  This was going to be a potential fitting problem.  I had never really worked with lace before or stitched a contrasting lining that would be a major part of the dress design.

Because this is a pullover dress, I needed to make sure that the lining was going to fit over my head and my chubby little body.  A couple of ladies from my Google Plus community saved the day by suggesting that I cut the lining on the bias, and then make long slits on the side.  I did exactly these two things, and the lining fit perfectly.

I used Burda Style Wedding Dress #104, and of course made quite a few changes.  The dress had a lot more ease than expected.  It ended up being a couple of sizes too big for me after cutting, and the finished product is still a little loose.  The back is supposed to be two panels sewn up the center back, but I made it into a single panel because I thought it showed off the lace more and designed a key-hole cut out instead of the original seam opening at the neck.  I think mine looks better.  :-)  I also made the sleeve shorter, and I did not put in the pockets because I was afraid the added weight would make the lace stretch.  Happy Spring sewing!

Here's a close-up of the dress so you can see the contrasting pink lining better.