Blushing Izzy Dress Tutorial April 28, 2014 – Posted in: dress, Easter, girls clothes, sewing, tutorial
My girls get a lot of say in their Easter dresses. Isabelle came to me with a sketch of her Easter dress a few months ago. She was insistent on the cross-front bodice (I later found out she copied it from a very old Barbie book I didn’t even know we had.) When I decided to go all 1950’s vintage, we looked on Pinterest and etsy for some styles that matched up with her design. You can see some of our inspiration HERE. I sketched it out since her original was lost and we came up with this:
I did the cross-front and waistband much like the Twirly Lace Dress I made last year, so it really wasn’t all that hard to figure out the rest.
I even let her “name” the dress design. There are five colors besides white in the sheet so each girl got their own accent color. Isabelle loves pink, so I made hers in the same shade of pale pink found in the fabric- I even found the perfect shade of pink in my stash, which is not really surprising with all of these girls. Later I found some vintage trims and a zipper in the same shade, too! So, that is the “blushing” part. “Izzy” is what the kids at school call her. We never do at home, though.
Here is a little tutorial since I took some pics along the way. Let’s get started!
Trace a T-shirt that fits really well to get your bodice shape. From the shoulder, draw a diagonal line towards the middle. Add seam allowances. This is your lining pattern. For the gathered front, extend from the shoulders to the center a few inches. I actually just put it all on one piece of freezer paper and folded it back to cut the lining ’cause I am
lazy efficient like that. Cut two bodice pieces from the main fabric (make sure they face opposite directions!) and two from the lining.
The back pieces are made the same as the front lining with an extra inch at the center for a zipper or buttons or whatever you want to do with it. This creates a V in the back. Symmetry. I like that. Cut two from the main fabric (facing opposite directions again) and two from the lining.
You also need a waistband. I picked a random height for the waistband and made it half of her waist measurement + seam allowances + a half inch for some wiggle room. So, the front waistband here is 3 inches high by 12 inches wide. The back waistband pieces have to be the same width as the back bodice pieces. Cut lining pieces to match, too.
Here are all of the bodice pieces…
Alright… now for the sewing part…
The first thing that needs to be done is the gathering on the bodice. You don’t want gathers under the arms, so the bottom will only have a gathering stitch from the center angle to straight down from the arm scythe. The top gather is all the way across. I ran a wide stitch across, then took one big stitch straight down, then ran a long stitch back across. This gives two lines of gathering stitches and it works out so much better than using one. I used to be lazy and stubborn by sewing just one. Not anymore. I have been converted.
So, pull the ends of the strings and gather the bodice until it matches up with the lining.
Sew the shoulder seams of the main fabric…