Monday, October 19, 2009

Money Dress Diary: part 3

The end is in sight, ladies and gentlemen.

After another few marathons all day Friday and all evening Saturday, the bodice is almost entirely done. I'll skip the mockup stage, as that's pretty boring. Truly Victorian's TV 422 pattern was the base for building the Money Dress bodice. It needed very few alterartions, but did require another assload of pleating (as per usual). I had an extra fun time doing the standing collar which had to be graded into the squared neck; figuring out the correct gentle grade for a pleated collar before it gets pleated was super fun (can you smell the sarcasm?). Still, it worked pretty well in the end. The velvet piece around the shoulders was draped and cut, then I sewed the piping I made sandwiched between the velvet and the pleated ruffle, and topstitched that onto the outer fabric for the bodice. The lace and pleated collar was stitched on next, and then I sewed the lining onto the outer fabric, leaving the neckline open around the collar. I hand-stitched that last.

I decided that the option with the fewest fit questions for closure was to close it up the front as with the original pattern, then lay the velvet panel over that and do a hook-and-eye closure down one side. The hooks-and-eyes down the CF do the work, and the ones on the panel are just for show. Don't judge me with no makeup; it was 10pm on Saturday night, and I was tired.

A quick few pics of the skirts, now completely done with ribbon trim. I cannot leave them on the mannequin, unfortunately; as you can see, Viola finds them fascinating, and I would come home one day to find holes chewed in the pleated flounces.
The buttons look super-light in these pics; they are lighter than I wanted them to be, but they are darker than they appear here. This is not the only issue in this picture, however. When I work on something as detailed as this, I tend to get tunnel-vision, focusing only on each element and unable to see the piece as a whole until it is more finished. Last night I stepped back and looked at this compared to the pics of the original, and discovered the front ruffles are way too wide. By an inch. Observe the tiny ruffle in the original below:

I had to cut the sides on the ruffles, and I'm experiementing now with Fray Check or possibly melted wax to stop the ends of the now-unfinished ruffles from fraying and ravelling.
I like the longer ruffle on the back however, so I have left that the original width:

Here's the final bodice, sans sleeves of course:

The ruffles are much better now, I just hope I can come up with a solution for the fraying edges!
Next up: sleeves! Stay tuned; this dress has to be finished for its debut on Saturday!


Betty said...

You look gorgeous! I love your costume.
I think you did a great job!
Happy Monday!:)

Betty said...

You look gorgeous!
And I think you did a great work.
Happy Monday!

kaye said...

It's coming right along--can't wait to see the finished gown.

Serendipity Handmade said...

WOW! I found you via SITS before you were featured and I'm a follower now! Your work is amazing...I love this dress!

AmandaMuses said...

WOW, just WOW!! Your artistry is amazing! Can't wait to see the finished piece, this is gorgeous!!