Thursday, January 22, 2015

Corset dress

My caseload at work has been low the last few weeks and I have found myself with some wonderful sewing time which is a perfect prelude to my new gig.  Yes, I am still a full time Occupational Therapist, but it seems my sewing is taking off quite a bit.  These long winter nights and cozy winter days have led me to my sewing machine over and over.  

A dear friend's sister works for a company that does princess parties and was in need of a seamstress to do some repairs to various costumes.  After she saw my Anna and Elsa costumes, it turned more into a request for commissioned costumes!   Talk about a dream come true!   While I've been waiting on some fabric to come in, I thought it would be prudent to work on my corset skills.  And by that I mean I thought it would be prudent to learn to make a corset.  

I've been dying to make a dress similar to the floral dress Giselle wears on her date with Edward in Disney's Enchanted. I love that silhouette and I've never quite outgrown my twirly skirts phase. 

For this project I used Simplicity 5006 for the corset and read a few tutorials I found via Pinterest.  Honestly, I was expecting it to be difficult but I learned that if you can sew a straight line, you can sew a corset! Now I didn't obey the rules and I used the wrong fabric for this, therefore it isn't as sturdy as a typical corset.  I use a quilters cotton because I adored the yellow and white pattern.  That, and using a dark heavy fabric wouldn't exactly match the innocent, playful, girly looking I was going for.  

Unfortunately, I only have one picture of the process.  
(Yes, I did my hammering on an old anatomy book. That book also contains flowers I've been pressing from a bouquet I caught back in June ... Glad those $$$ textbooks still get use!)

Now for the skirt!  A few weekends ago while visiting my parents I pulled out my mom's 31 year old pleating machine that was used for smocking.  I had the crazy notion that I wanted to start making smocked baby gifts.  Who knows, I still might.  Anyway, I used it to heavily pleat 3 yards of fabric.  That's right, I didn't cut any panels and sew them together, I just cranked 3 yards (9 feet!!!) of fabric through that thing!   
Side note:  isn't my new dress form wonderful?  She was a birthday present from Derek.  

Back to the dress.  I simply put all the fabric, pleats and all through my machine to keep them in place.  Then I added a waist band and a zipper and it's good to go!  I put some pretty white ribbon through my corset and it was ready to go!   

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