I almost went out to buy a croquet set for this photoshoot but settled on a tea party instead…
I can’t help it. When FrancesSuzanne announced the Summer flips, I had to do the Oliver + S one. This time, it’s the Croquet dress. I adore the collar in view A so I knew I wanted to keep it. Not as crazy about the drop wait with the drawstring. Or is it elastic? I hardly looked because I knew I was changing that. I concentrated my efforts on the bottom portion.
I decided to create a dress with an inverted V shaped pleat of contrasting fabric down the center. Sounds simple, right? I originally wanted the angle to be the same as the collar but it would have been too wide at the bottom. So I reduced it. But then, I wanted the pleat to start a little lower than the neckline. The more I thought about it, the more worried I was about how it would work out. I sat down on the floor with my pattern, paper, scissors, and tape. Yes, I prefer working on the floor. I started measuring, cutting, and taping, thinking about how this would all be sewn together. Hoping I wasn’t forgetting something crucial.
Now that I think about it, this would have made a great tutorial. But while I was doing it? I was way too busy working out this puzzle to think of pictures. Really quickly, I took the front pattern dress and lengthened it, following the A line on the side and preserving the curve at the bottom. I cut out a triangle from the middle, starting a little below armscye level all the way down to the bottom. I added a seam allowance to the upper part of the center since it wouldn’t be cut on the fold anymore. I also added the seam allowance to the cut out part on top of 1.5″ for the inside part of the pleat. I copied all that to the back. Then, I took that triangle I’d cut out and added the seam allowance and the same 1.5″ for the inside of the pleat. That’s the only piece that was cut on the fold…
I sewed the front and back up first. And came up on an issue. The top of the pleat was flopping around inside a bit. I had to anchor it but any stitching would show on the outside. Solution? Ribbon to hide the stitching!
Best ribbon sewing I have ever done. Seriously. Perfectly edgestitched on both sides… With a pretty bow in the back.
At this point, it’s hardly worth mentioning that I left off the sleeves and finished the armholes with a bias tape facing, is it?
And let’s pretend that front button is only decorative, not meant to hide that I somehow managed to sew the collar on slightly off center.
And what did souricette 2 say? “A princess dress!” I didn’t quite get it. It’s A-line, not pouffy at all… But then I tried the dress on her and she stroked and examine the pleat, repeating that it was a princess dress. And I got it. Her new dress reminds her of those princess dresses with the open overdress revealing the underdress.
Well then. It’s a princess dress that she can wear everyday. She loves it and was quite willing to cooperate for pictures.
Still a ham though…