Monday, June 5, 2023

How I Made This Dress, Part 1

 Hello all,

I'm pretty excited about this new dress! It is a little different than the designs that I usually make. I documented a lot of the process so I could share it with you. Here goes Part 1!

The inspiration for this dress was this 1940's tiered dress, and the fabric came from Joanns.

First, I Visualized My Design

Here was my rough drawing of what I planned to make. Yes, the finished product turned out different. I changed some things...and forgot some things because I was not paying attention to my drawing. Just being honest!

 I used another dress I made to give me some dimensions for the bodice. I folded it in 1/2 and laid in on my folded fabric. (Look at this post to see how I fold my fabric)

My front (lower) and back (higher) neckline 

More lines :) I made my armholes and shoulders larger than my original markings, because I was cutting a yoke out of this bodice, which meant that I needed room for its seam allowances. 

Speaking of the yoke, I used this measuring tape as a sort of compass to make the yoke the right distance from the neckline.

I cut the back neckline and the armhole out. I opted to cut the armhole a little differently than I had drawn. 
I also drew a line for the bottom of my bodice, but I didn't end up cutting it at all! I had planned to cut it before I attached the skirt after sewing the bodice, so I could make sure that the bodice was the length I wanted it to be. But I left it with a low-waist at the end.

Cutting my front neckline

I decided to make my neckline a little bigger

The yoke

For the yoke lining, I salvaged some muslin from my sewing scraps. 

I had to do the yoke lining in 2 pieces, but it turned out fine. I made sure to leave seam allowances for the connecting seams so the lining would still fit my yoke once its pieces were sewn together.

I sewed the lining to the yoke, (with the yoke on the right side of the fabric) and snipped into the seam allowance. This is to make the curves of a neckline lie flat and smooth when you flip a lining or facing to the inside.

Now it was time to sew the yoke to the bodice.

I sewed an arc of lace to the main piece of the bodice first, and then added the yoke. This way, my lace could not move around while I sewed the yoke and bodice together, and I used that first seam as a guide for where to sew my yoke on. My lace didn't get completely enclosed in a seam this way :)

Then I sewed the back of the bodice to the back of the yoke...

I top-stitched above my lace, folding the seam behind it upwards so that my lace would lie down and not up.

I sewed the side seams together.

Well, that'll be all for this post. Stay tuned for more of the process!

to God be the glory,
Miss Humphrey


  1. Good job of documenting how you designed and made it. It turned out really well. Very pretty.

  2. very clever design with the yoke. it is very pretty. You don't seem to be running out of ideas. Ann

  3. Wow. This is very clever, to make your own pattern. Nicely done!

  4. Super neat!!


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