I’m not quite sure how the tradition started, but over the last few years I started picked a nice dress to wear to my birthday dinner. Last year, I decided to make that special dress. This year, I decided to turn the tradition into making a birthday dress each year,
Around the holidays I was watching a Christmas movie on Lifetime and saw a really interesting bodice of a dress. My first reaction was I want to try to make that. Of coarse there are too many things going on around the holidays. As a month or 2 passed, I got it in my head that it should be my birthday dress this year.
My birthday is May 27th so I am quite early this year. With the coronavirus quarantine going on, and some gifted fabric that was perfect for it, I couldn’t wait. Hopefully we’ll be able to go to restaurants on my birthday.
Do you recognize the pattern? Probably not, but I have used it before… on my wedding dress. Yes it’s that same pattern, and yes both are quite hacked. McCall’s 7124.
You can find the blogs over my wedding dress here : Wedding Dress: Part 3 (The Skirt) Wedding Dress: Part 2 (Bodice Fitting) Wedding Dress: Part 1 (planning)
I used the same view: view B as my base.
I had been going over how to attempt the yoke in my head for a few months. I originally thought I would create bias tape, but I was struggling with this fabric holding a fold long enough to stitch it down and I didn’t like stitching showing. So I ended up creating tubes. Compared to my Inspo, the tubes are quite small. If I did this again, I would have made them wider.
I started by using double fold bias tape to create the frame of the pieces. I just took the width of some double fold bias tape store bought to create my own so the fabric would match. I just turned the ends in and stitched the pieces together. It would have been much cleaner to hand stitch it. It also would have been nice if the bias tape ended up the width of my seam allowance, but it’s slightly smaller which made stitching in later steps tricky.
I sewed up a bunch of tubes and then placed them diagonally, encasing the ends inside the bias tape frame. When I started going the opposite direction, I made sure to go over and under each diagonal piece.
Once it was all pinned in, I just sewed along the edge of the double fold bias tape encasing the ends in. I should have hand stitched this because some of the tubes moved around at the machine. It’s so fiddley.
I started out at a size 14. I did some grading between sizing on my last one, but I thought I was just ‘oh so smarter’ this time and went rouge. I had quite a hard time with fitting.
Let’s start with adjustments I made from the ‘get-go’. I did a small bust adjustment. I also got nervous when I looked at the waist finished garment measurements and added 1/4″ to each side. I disregarded the skirt and drafted a 1/2 circle skirt to go with the bodice. I also added pockets to the side seam.
If you follow my on instagram stories, you would have seen my woes. The first try on looked so bad. The boning was curving weird. P.S. Steam your boning. However, I decided I didn’t need the boning and seam ripped it out.
The waist was sitting to low and I had too much room in the side seam of the bodice (not the waist where I had added). So I seam ripped so much. Took the waistband out, cut 1″ out of the bodice, took 1/2″ out of the side seam and sewed it all back together. It was so much better.
Inside the hem really helped me out with the adjustments. I also used her method for leveling the hem of the circle skirt. I can’t for the life of me find which video she talks about it in. But basically she uses her dress form to measure. It worked like a charm. It feels very even all the way around.
Fabric: unknown, it was gifted to me
Alterations: SBA, shortened bodice 1″, 1/2 circle skirt, 1/2″ out of side seams, 1/4″ added to waistband, yoke hacked, took out boning
Overall: I enjoy having a challenge and this was that. It definitely wasn’t easy and took some time. I am looking forward to wearing it for my birthday though