I've been wanting to do this dress for a long time and I finally got around to doing it this past week. It's taken a lot of my time and energy and there are still a few things on it I'd like to fix. In all I am super proud of it and love thid dress. I took tons of pictures of the constrution and not all of them ended up here, I will post them to my blog so check back there too!
Start with a matching top and bottom set.
Begin by deconstructing the skirt- for me this meant removing the elastic band.
Remove the first tier of your skirt to use as your waist band.
Press press press! (you're basically going to be going back and pressing open everything so keep your iron up and ready)
Measure about 3-4 inches above your navel and measure around yourself there. That will be your waist measurment. Cut your fabric inculding your seam allowances (for me this was an extra 2 inches)
You're going to need a front and a back for your waist band- for me this just meant cutting my original waist band in half.
To make it possible for you to get into your dress, cut open the center back of both your waist bands.
Serge the open ends or overlock using the zig-zag stitch on your machine.
I pressed my seams down with stitch witchery and then sewed down to secure.
Remove the gathering stitch from your origional skirt and press.
Cut open the center back of your skirt, serge the open end or overlock with your zig-zag stitch.
Press your seam down with stitch-witchery and sew as you did before with your waist band.
Then set your stitch length on your machine to the longest length and your tension to the hightest. Sew a straight line along the top of your skirt and you should get a gather.
Fit your skirt to your waist band by pulling on the gather string until it is the right size.
Pin and sew the front and back of your waist band to the skirt of your dress.
It should look something like this when finished.
Next take out your top and mark out on the back. (note your shirt should be loose fitting on you).
Cut the excess off of your shirt.
Next cut out along the marks you made before (be sure to only do this on the back and to leave seam allowance)
Cut your back open.
Next, using your seam ripper take apart the pieces of your top.
Make sure that the two back pieces are the same and then using your scrap fabric and tailors chalk trace out two new pieces for the inside lining of your back.
cut your pieces out. Pin the right sides of your fabric together and sew along the outside curves.
Turn right side out and press.
Sew the shoulder seams back together.
...and the side seams.
Re-attach your sleeves.
Going back to your skirt, press down and in the top seam of your waist band.
Mark the center front of both your skirt and bodice and align them together.
Pin your bodice between the two pieces of your waist band.
also pin shut the side seam of your waist band and sew shut.
The last thing you will do will be to add buttons and button holes along the seam you created before with your stitch witchery and on the back of your bodice.
before it was all sewn back together.