Oh and for full disclaimers sake I am mostly using the photography skills of other people... Some are guests and family... But I need to credit 'Fallen Star Photography' who took most of these. I'm using them with my sisters permission... She bought them and stuff.
Me and Kirsty wearing the dresses on the big day!!
I'm super proud of these, but my god have they been a headache to make. Between fitting to someone else who doesn't have my usual fitting problems but a whole new set of them, to the joy that is stretch lace (grrrr). But they got done, and they got a mention in no less than two speeches (the groom seems to have hired me to kit everyone out in the event of the zombie apocalypse).
But down to details... How about I give you a summary before going into particulars...
Pattern: Simplicity 4070
Size: Various (there were two of us and I mashed sizes together for both of us)
Fabric: faux rough silk in gunmetal grey, light grey stretch lace, and light grey lining
Other notions: teeny pale grey buttons, red shoes, and bouquets
Now those details are done... Onwards to the sewing process!!!
So the pattern is Simplicity 4070, version F but without the lace overlay on the skirt. I made sashes instead to break up the line between silk and lace.
Sorry... Fuzzy picture
As I have very little experience sewing for a fuller bust I made a toile for Kirsty, just for the top half to get the bustier and the lace part right. Other than that the fitting was really easy... Except for the zips, I fell out with the zips.
Because I used invisible zips, and have never managed to actually make them invisible, I decided to hand pick them... And I may have stabbed myself... Maybe more than once. But they were invisible! Yay!
While the fit, in general, may have been easy... Working with the fabrics, less so. Well the faux silk was very easy, it was the lace that caused me issues.
I decided to French seam the bodice as I really didn't know how to finish lace (these are my very first forays into sewing with lace). I am really pleased with this decision, but it was super fiddly! And I don't believe I have ever sworn at my sewing machine quite so much. But once the French seams were done my next problem was how to finish the armholes and neckline. No facings possible, and bias binding felt would have been too bulky for the delicate fabric.
I solved this by using very fine satin ribbon, stitching it by hand and using it just like bias binding, flipping it to the inside and trimming the scrappy bits. This was entirely an experiment, but it worked!! Once pressed it worked just right.
I thought the back opening might have been an issue because of how fine this edging was. I closed the lace above the Zips with a row of buttons...
But there wasn't much leeway for button loops, so I did some googling and you-tubing and I now know how to make thread loops... Very delicate but five of them on each dress took a bit of time.
The dresses are fully lined, most of which was down to hand stitching seams closed... Again it was a bit time consuming.
I sort of made up the sashes, I just cut out two very long oblongs and stitched them together, graded the seams and flipped it inside out... Yet more hand stitching to close them up. Simple but effective.
I hemmed both of our skirts just above the knee, But decided to do this by machine using bias binding... They did turn out a bit wibbly but they were still good, the silk had a great shape and swirl to it. I really loved that when the light hit it in a certain way it almost looked red, which matched our shoes and the roses in our hair. I really felt so smart, Kirsty liked hers too... And she got a free hand tailored dress out of the deal... Win win!
The day was great, and I felt really proud that the dresses worked out how I wanted them too... Also I love this group picture... He he he!!