Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Backless dress design - pattern drafting

In my previous post about the backless dress I am making to wear to a wedding in 6 weeks times I was deliberating between:


Well, the votes are in and I have decided on 50's chic. I couldn't get past the thought that the 80's glam looked more like a day dress - I can imagine it in a light Chambray or even a fun floral. I will definitely keep it in mind for a dress at a later date.

The drafting process for the bodice was an involved one.  I started with a standard block and modified it according to the design. I firstly included french darts - I figured that these gave the dress more of a 50's look - and drafted the shoulder to sit slightly off shoulder (but not too off shoulder that it slid right off - certainly not a good look after a few champagnes!). I found I ended up taking a few centimetres off the shoulder seam to make sure it stayed put.

 The back too had a few drafting tweaks. The curve of the backless design undertook a number of tucks to ensure that it didn't gape.

After 4 different toiles, each being subjected to various tucks and adjustments, I think I am finally happy with the fit.

I won't bother to draft a pattern piece for the skirt as the shape will be provided by the pleats. It will have 3 large box pleats in the front and 2 in the back as well as pockets in the side seams. The fabric is quite delicate and frays easily so I think I will use french seams. Side seam pockets with french seams - I do like a challenge!

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