An email came to me with these photos and a request…”Can you make this fit?” and “What will it cost?” Here it is on the model.
Well, let’s start adding up the items…see the lovely red clamps on the shoulders? Don’t we all love working with fine netting and lace appliques? Will the appliques be removed easily? Are the sewn on or glued?
Then, there is the issue of the hem…we have seen this before haven’t we? A skirt that is 5 inches too long and lots of thick scallop lace trim. Is it removable or will it have to be cut away first and then hand sewn back into place higher up? Then, there is the skirt lining with 2 inch wide HH braid and any netting to deal with.
What else? A bustle…sure.
Here is something I have never seen before…a double layer of chiffon hemmed together at the floor.
It will be hemmed using an opening in the side seam or each layer will be hemmed separately.
The lace hem has to be raised 4.5 to 5 inches:
The shoulder seams have to be taken in 2 inches and the lace motifs removed first. See that fishing line/invisible thread sticking up?
A 5-point bustle will be needed to get all that train up for dancing.
Again, another first…under that lace edging is a 3 inch wide strip of Horsehair just sewn on for stiffness so if I want to shorten the hem, the HH braid has to be removed…by unpicking all the 3 lines of stitching. The bride says she is not fussy about putting the HH back so we may leave the front hem soft instead.
Just beyond the side seams, I cut the HH braid away.
Starting about 12 inches from the side seam, I measure up at an angle to the 4.5 inches level:
Then I red thread trace the new placement line for the top edge of the scallops. Just yesterday I was watching a video of how to do this, well, someone else’s version of how to do this on YouTube and she whipped off the edging and CUT OFF the extra tulle and re-attached the lace border higher up and I was gasping! Beside not taking into account that the bride might change her mind/wear different shoes or the lace/tulle relaxes between fittings, she just machine sewed all the lace edging on without a fitting. Scary or gutsy?
This lace edging has been sewn with teeny tiny stitches and impossible to remove so I will cut around each top edge first.
The scary part…done…and ready to be pinned higher up before the next fitting.
Each tip of the lace is now pinned and ready to be hand basted with white thread.
The bride decides that she does not want her chiffon train. First the double layer is pinned along the hem and then the row of pins are matched up after thread tracing the new hem level.
Using the Frixion pen to mark the chiffon which will disappear with the heat of the iron.
Once marked, the dress is tried on the mannequin to check for the levels.
The two chiffon layers are now going to be separate and way shorter.
Let’s not forget to trim the organza layers once the lace border is basted and ready for try-on.
Even after hand basting, the lace hem needs to be raised up another inch.
But at least the altered shoulders sit well.
The final fitting yields a bustle that clears the floor evenly and a front that clears the floor perfectly too. Some days I am amazed at how well things turn out…must be those fairies who come in and sew during the night every night…God Bless them!
On the gardening front, we have new photos. First are Bing cherries, California peppers and finally lots of lettuce, spinach, chard and tomato plants.
Happy sewing everyone! Stay hydrated!