Hi, friends! If you’re wondering where I’ve been the last few weeks, just imagine me chained up in my own private sweatshop! It’s Tuesday, and the dresses need to be finished, packed up, and on a 6am flight with me Friday morning! Eek! Here’s what I’ve done so far:
Mom’s dress– I spent f o r e v e r on this, adjusting the fit, finishing the seams with Snug Hug, and adding a full lining. The lining was super difficult to figure out, although I got an ENORMOUS amount of help from Katy of Denim Skirts and Other Stuff— this gal is a true princess! I could NOT figure out how to do a full lining on a sleeveless dress, so she posted her notes and a link to Angela Kane’s suggestions on Burdastyle. Then, when I couldn’t figure out how to join the shoulder seams, she sent me a super detailed email walking me through the process! She’s my guardian sewing angel! Her directions were really clear, but I still had a really hard time executing them (the lining seam and the shell seam weren’t lining up correctly, etc.). I did the best that I could, but eventually I started freaking out when I realized how little time I had left to sew (this was mid-week last week), so I packed up the dress and mailed it to my mom so she could hem it herself and slipstitch the lining to the zipper.
B’s dress: Sewed it up and added in-seam pockets at her request before I realized that this would screw up the placement of the side zipper. Decided I would shorten the zipper and leave the pockets as she should still be able to shimmy into the dress and reallly wanted pockets, but the next day I started imaging scenarios where she couldn’t get into the dress or the zipper split ten minutes before we all had to walk down the aisle, so I removed the pocket on the left side and installed the zipper as the pattern suggested. At least she still has one pocket… one’s better than none, right? Then I sewed the lining to the dress and understitched, but now I’m stuck on the sewing the shoulders thing again (the shell straps seem to be a bit longer than the lining, so I can’t get the seams up to the shoulder to line up nicely. I decided to skip over fixing this in favor of getting at least something done on my own dress. All the seams are finished (with Snug Hug, as the cotton/silk blend was SUPER ravelly), but I need to slipstitch the lining to the zipper and Man Friend is probably pressing the hem under as we speak (and before he goes to his night shift– what a darling!). Be shocked, sewists– I’m going to machine hem this baby! No time for hand sewing, Dr. Jones!
Mine: Mocked up a muslin of the bodice Sunday night and found the dart placement to be… weird. Like, I’m not sure what kind of a lady this would work for, as the darts point, oh, about an inch and a half closer to the center than they should on me. Hmm… Also, the waist line isn’t marked, but the bodice ended a good inch above my natural waist (huh? I never need to lengthen a bodice… is this supposed to sit above your natural waist?). I lowered it an inch and moved the darts (sloppily and probably incorrectly) so things are looking a little bit better. I still have a little bit of poochy fabric under the bust, which is weird, but could probably be solved by narrowing the darts a little, although the waist is pretty snug, so I’m not sure if it works. The problem will actually be solved by me by… wearing the cummerbund over it so you can’t see what’s actually going on down there!
I’m still struggling a bit with fit issues, though. I cut a straight size 0, which is a tiny bit too small in the waist, hoping that the ease would make up for it. I think I can get away with it, although I wouldn’t mind a hair more room at the waist. The bust fits pretty well, but I have some gaping above it towards the neckline that I’m trying to figure out how to get rid of (it’s a little triangle of excess fabric at the CF when you pinch it, like a dart would have). Do I trace a dart on the pattern and do some magic to move the excess to the waist or something? Will this change the shape of the bodice drastically? Fit for Real People recommends a horizontal tuck for neckline gape, but this doesn’t seem quite right as the excess fabric is right at the CF. Digging around online, it seems like what I SHOULD do is cut a smaller size (impossible, since I cut the smallest) and do a tiny FBA, but I just don’t have time! I’m tempted just to ignore it and hope for the best because I’m so crunched for time, but I’ll honestly feel pretty sad wearing a dress that doesn’t fit well. I guess the best case scenario would be an easy fix, one that would require minimal muslin-ing so I can jump right into dress construction tonight. Any thoughts? I was too disheartened and exhausted last night to take any photos or I’d post them… Let’s see, the back… I ended up with excess fabric at the CB, too, and I made the back shoulder darts larger and 1″ longer. I’m worried that I will end up with a back boob situation (it looks a little pokey-out-y to me, although Man Friend insists that it looks fine and that I’m paranoid). I can’t figure out why I would have extra fabric right at my CB and CF. I’m sure this is some sort of classifiable figure flaw. Ugh. I’m super frustrated– I really wanted to make something special, and I don’t know how you fast sewin’ fiends get stuff done! It’s taken me forever to work on THREE dresses (not to mention that work has been insane, and I had to work all day Saturday unexpectedly, which ate up a huge chunk of sewing time that I hadn’t anticipated). UGH. I don’t see any way to avoid pulling an all-nighter (and I’ve been sleeping 4-5 hours every night for the last two weeks), but I feel like I’ll just end up making major mistakes that way (like how I put my sister’s lining together backwards and had to rip everything out). I started cutting out the fashion fabric last night, but avoided the bodice pieces until I can figure out what to do.
I’m just going to do facings for the Peony dress (or maybe even just finish the neck and armholes with bias tape) to save time, and I plan to not finish the seams (terrible idea? maybe I’ll just barely pink them) right now, but sometime after the wedding is over. Definitely going to be machine hemming, too! Or possibly sticking the hem up with duct tape… or maybe just cutting holes for my arms and head in a peach-colored bedsheet and calling it a dress. Yes, that could work!
ACK! I’m writing this from work as we wait for a truck to arrive. Hopefully I won’t have to work crazy late, but I’ll have tonight, tomorrow night (probably won’t be home til at least 10p, if not midnight), and Thursday night (hoping not to stay up crazy late since I have a 6a flight the next morning, oh and it’s my birthday Thurs, but I’ll be celebrating AFTER the wedding… with a 20 hour nap on Sunday!) What do you think? Can I get this done?