If you don’t, you should! Together with Adrianna, the other half of their fabulous blog, they have quite the site full of inspiration and tutorials. One of my favorite parts of their blog is their conversations back and forth on the sidebar-they are usually pretty random but always funny! lol. A few of my favorite Susan projects are her Maypole Dress (love the piecing!), her awesome drawer stickers, her Pretty Pleats? tank, and her upcycled puffer shrug. Did you not die from laughter seeing that on April Fools Day? I know I did.
Get the full tutorial after the jump!
We start with the back of the bodice, where we’ll make button plackets. Press one side in 1/4″ onto the wrong side of the fabric.
Folded that over 1/2″ and press.
Edge stitch that.
Repeat for the other piece, pressing and stitching on the opposite side so that the pieces can then overlap each other like so. Here the left is over the right and I’ve put a few stitches in at the bottom to keep this in place later.
Pin the side panels in place, right sides facing the back’s right sides, and stitch.
Here’re the back and sides sewn together and pressed. And the skirt underneath. But the skirt is too wide for the top. We need to gather it.
Since I am a miserable failure at using the supposedly simple basting stitch and pull method of supposedly even gathering, I used the widest straight stitch length my machine would allow and turned the tension 3/4 of the way up. My tension is usually at about 4, could go as high as 9, but I set it at 7. I didn’t need a LOT of gathering. Just enough to shrink this edge up a bit to match my bodice pieces so far. Use a 1/4″ seam allowance so that these stitches can be hidden when you next use a 1/2″ allowance to attach the skirt.
Laying a piece of interfacing on top of my dress to match up the width, I cut pieces of interfacing of the size I wanted my embroidered pieces. Some eyeballing. I ironed those onto the wrong side of a scrap of my dress fabric.
On the right side of the fabric I marked the edges with a water-soluble marker. A water-soluble marker makes marks that disappear when water touches it. Different from a washable marker. Those marks give me the boundaries for the decorative stitching.
I carefully folded the edges under and ironed the applique shapes, trimming the excess wherever it was bulky. Turn the steam off for this part or you’ll lose a finger. Not that I know from experience or anything.
Place the two shapes where you’d like them on the dress. Pin the lower shape and stitch it in place.