Sunday, February 1, 2009

strapless shwe shwe dress

This pattern is a winner - it's a dress and high waisted skirt combo, and is real easy to make. Best of all no bra is necessary because the elastic in the smocking keep you snug.

As I overheard 'panels are dressmaking made simple'. Very true - if you use at the standard length, there is no need for finishing hemline seams.

All you do is take some panels, in my case I used eight panels in three different patterns. If they are still connected together, cut out panels.

Pin the panels right sides together so narrow edges are together at the top and wide edges at the bottom. Do not sew together in a circle - leave it flat as shown in the picture. Finish the raw edges using a serge stitch.

Then thread some elastic thread (used for smocking) onto the sewing machine bobbin.
Sew in straight lines starting from the top of the garment. Sew on the right side. The first three should be close together (say 1cm) then the next three at 2cm and the rest at 5cm until you have 15cm (at least enough to cover your breasts). In order to keep the elastic lines straight, I suggest marking the fabric with a removable marker (e.g. chalk). Finally sew up the two edges so you have a finished dress.

If you want to make this pattern without the standard skirt panels, use this guide to make your own: each skirt panel measures (without seam allowance)
91cm long (0.99 yards),
13cm wide (0.14 yards) at the top
25.5cm (0.28 yards) at the bottom.

For my dress I used 8 panels and I am a size 78cm (32 inches) under the bust and 91cm (36 inches) over the bust.

I have some panels available in my etsy shop:
brown spidersweb
baobab tree
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