Saturday, March 9, 2013

Striped Dress

 I came across this striking green and white striped dress of Swedish design, it's from Anive for the Minors for their spring and summer 2013 collection. I looked around to see where it could be bought, but there's no place in the USA that sells it and the 2 Swedish websites that sell that line of clothing don't sell that dress.
Purple Rose Party Dress free pattern and tutorial
 I realized I could sew up a very similar one using my Purple Rose Party Dress pattern with minimal adjustments. Would you like to sew one, too? Here's what I did…
Purple Rose Party Dress free pattern and tutorial
 Striped Dress free pattern and tutorial

What you need:
  • 2 yards striped fabric (2 yards was just enough, to be on the safe side 2.25 or 2.5 yards would be better, if using thicker striped fabric I recommend 2.5+ yards)
  • 1 yard lining fabric
  • 1 invisible zipper (the length of the zipper I installed was 10 inches)
  • Purple Rose Party Dress free pattern and tutorial
  • Quilting ruler that has a 45 degree angle on it
  • Rotary cutter
  • Cutting mat
  • 1 inch bias tape maker

Quick explanation of how I adapted my Purple Rose Party Dress pattern to create this striped dress:
  • omit the front bow sash
  • cut the front bodice pattern in 2 separate pieces
  • cut an extra circle skirt 6 inches in length
  • fully line the bodice and circle skirts (omit the French seams)
  • omit the bias tape trim on the hem of the circle skirts

Now for the more detailed explanation with photos of how I executed this look. Warning: To obtain perfect 90 degree angles (in the final result) extra precision is needed when cutting out every piece. Following the photos is very important for this tutorial. Please refer to the Purple Rose Party Dress tutorial for information and basic construction steps that I might have missed here.

First of all add .5 inch to the center of the front bodice piece, this is for the .5 inch seam allowance. The front bodice is cut in 2 pieces where the stripes are cut at a 45 degree angle.

 I put the first bodice piece on top of the fabric (right sides together) to obtain a perfectly symmetrical piece.
 Cut the back bodice pieces at a 45 degree angle, making sure to line up the stripes (and form a 90 degree angle) with the front bodice pieces.

 Sew the front bodice pieces together with a .5 inch seam allowance, press seams open.

 Finish sewing together the bodice pieces and the bodice lining pieces, press seams open.
 Moving onto the circle skirt of 6 inches in length. Cut out four 10 inch squares at a 45 degree angle.

 Sew them together, press seams open.
 Cut out a circle skirt of 6 inches in length in the lining fabric, place it on top (right sides together) of the large square you just sewed together.
 Cut out striped circle skirt, sew together using .25 inch seam allowance. Clip edges all around, turn right side out, and press.

 Repeat this for the circle skirt of 10 inches in length, but this time cut out four 14 inch squares.
Using .5 inch seam allowance attach the 2 circle skirts to the bodice.
Cut 3 yards of bias tape, 1.75 inches wide for the 1 inch bias tape maker (I made three 1 yard pieces of bias tape).

 The dress is just as pretty on the inside as it is on the outside being fully lined and also with the bias tape trim on the skirt/bodice seam.
 All that remains is installing the invisible zipper and sewing on the bias tape to the arm holes and neckline.
 Maybe you would prefer to have a 7 inch and 9 inch skirt lengths, for example. So depending on how you want the proportions of the 2 skirt layers, you can make the circle skirts at different lengths and here is what you will need:
  • 6 inch length: four 10 inch squares
  • 7 inch length: four 11 inch squares
  • 8 inch length: four 12 inch squares
  • 9 inch length: four 13 inch squares
  • 10 inch length: four 14 inch squares

 Isn't it incredible how the same sewing pattern can be used to create 2 completely different looks? That's what I call versatility!

I hope you enjoy sewing your striped dress!

PS Cost estimation: for 3 yards of fabric and 1 invisible zipper I spent $18.50

PPS If you like striped dresses you might also enjoy sewing my Purpledicular Dress