Monday, October 5, 2015

20 minute dress start to finish

I woke from my usual cat napping with a bolt of inspiration.  Went into my sewing room and wham, bam, just like that a groovy new dress was born.

Here it is as part of an ensemble with my chiffon bolero and matching underslip, striped sox and ballet flats.

~ The fabric is described as black, soft beige & white montage print dotted stretch netting lace ~

I was thrilled it could be so painlessly easy.  And fast.  And even look good.


~ and here it is on its own ~

I'm gonna show the how-to for those that care, but first a couple more shots of me against the pea green wall...

~ with my pink corduroy Becca Jacket, pattern by Tina Givens


~ and of course, my lovely Trippen ballet shoes from ebay ~

You'll crack up seeing my photo "tutorial" for the dress, so keep on going...



Okay now, I've never done one of these how-to's before and I don't know how to write or draw on photos so....

  • first I took 2 yards total of fabric that happened to be 54" wide.  It was the stretch mesh shown above, so it doesn't fray (i.e., doesn't need hemming or finished seams).  
~ this newspaper is an example of the 2 yds, however wide fabric ~

  • secondly, I folded the fabric in half, lengthwise, so the selvedge edges were together at the top and the fold was at the bottom.  
~ fabric is folded lengthwise, fold at bottom, selvedges meeting together at top ~
  •  third, fold the fabric in half, top to bottom, so raw edges meet at your right side and the folded section will be on your left side.
~ so it looks like this, folded in quarters ~

  •   here's a close-up so you can see where the folded edges end up
~ at top on your left and at bottom ~
  •  okay, now you're ready to cut the dress out of the folded fabric. This is a sample of the pattern piece, or shape I used for mine.  You could use whatever shape you want, from bodycon to shift to full.  You can trace off a shirt or dress that fits you well or a pattern shape you like.  Or just figure out how wide it needs to be from CF (center front) to under arm, or bust, or hips, whatever.  I don't like form fitting, so I wanted something loose and drapey. 
~ the CF goes along the fold at the bottom and is half the width of your dress ~
 The sleeve of the pattern goes to the top of the fold on the right and form 1/2 of the sleeves.

  • I cut a small slit for a boat-type neckline a the CF.  Make it small, you can always go bigger, but never smaller.
~ pretend this white paper is your cut fabric and unfold it in half ~
  • Unfold your fabric again and it will look like this
~ it is now one single layer ~
  •  And you're going to fold your fabric in half again, but this time with the right sides of the fabric facing each other and so it looks like a dress.
~ now we're going to turn it around so it does looks like a dress ~
~ there's your dress ~
  • Just run a seam starting at the end of the sleeve, down the arm, and down the skirt to it's hem.  Do the same on the other side.  And if you're using stretch mesh (or some other non-ravel fabric), you're done.  If you're not, you'll need to hem it, finish the seams and bias tape the neckline.

I added side seam pockets because I can't live without them.  And it's no big deal to do.  Just cut 4 pocket shapes and 1st sew each one onto each dress side.  Then when you place the dress together as shown above and sew the sleeve etc. together, include sewing the pocket patches as well.  I'm not going to show you, cuz this tute as simple as it is, has taken me half my life already.  geez.

I'm dashing off the Patti's Visibles party at Not Dead Yet Style before it's too late.  See you there.

28 comments:

  1. This is magic, you, your outfit, and your tutorial. Twenty minutes sounds simply indecent! hahaha. At first I thought you were covering up the fabric pattern with the paper on top of it in some conceptual art way. Then, doh, I clued in and actually read what you wrote. I SHALL DO THIS TOO! Thank you, Pao.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I knew my instructions would make it all too much! I was exasperated by the time I finished taking those pictures of folded paper and silly instructions on how to fold it. The dress = 20 minutes or less. Putting the tutorial on blog = 2 hours!

      Delete
  2. Thanks for this - I love, love this easy dress. Whenever I wake up from a cat nap, there's just a cat on my head and I feel cranky. You have the nap of an artist!

    -Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hehehe, my cat sleeps in the crook of my knees. It's all very comfortable. Yes, I really call them creativity naps, but no one would know what I meant.

      Delete
  3. Seriously? You are genius Pao! AND...you always have great sox!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hah! Now it takes a genius to put together your mens' shirt extravaganza. But my sox are called 'Eclipse' and are space-dyed gray and off-white.

      Delete
  4. fabulous print and a gorgeous dress! its a wonderful outfit you created with the twenty minute dress!!! love your tutorial!
    sewing can be so simple - i often see in internet how hard some work on complicated patterns to have a dull dress in the end - you do it right!!!
    xxxxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do despair when that happens - working on something unbearable complicated only to have it be a dud. But, then again there are some days where everything just works out right.

      Delete
    2. p.s.: do you know that i know the founder of trippen, michael oehler, from the very beginning of that company?? i ordered some spezial colored clogs for my first collection after design school in 1994 :-)
      xxxx

      Delete
    3. omg, how cool is that?! They are my favorite shoes, but way beyond my means. I'm able to get them only when they're priced very low on ebay.

      Delete
  5. Bloody genius! I like to sew and then have something to wear immediately - no patience. This is perfect - thank you xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, you're welcome and I wish you well sewing. Let me see it too!

      Delete
  6. Alrighty then. This is my kind of sewing. Wham Bam. I'm actually possibly going to try this is I can ever find some fabric. Waa waa. I'm always whining about my lack of fabric. Poor me. But I Will Find Some. And I'll make this dress, pockets and all. And if I'm lucky I'll look as beautiful as you do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, a lot of times I get my fabric on line from fabricmart.com
      (Not fabric.com). In fact, that's where this fabric came from. They have great fabric that comes in and then is gone. And they have great sales all the time too. I could go on and on.

      Delete
  7. That's almost identical to the method I use to make my minis, you explained it so well and demonstrated it beautifully. xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh go on. I thought I made a mess of my 'how-to' - complicating it effortlessly. But thanks for the thought, Vix.

      Delete
  8. After I went back and realized what the hell you were talking about, it all made sense!!!!! I'm a little challenged in the concentration realm these days. Love this and might even try it. It's really right up my alley, as far as simplicity and speed. THANK YOU!!! XXXOOO

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Jean, I know what you mean. My pseudo-instructions just interfere with the intuitiveness of it all. I'm sure you've already done this before anyway.
      So nice to see you again.

      Delete
  9. Gorgeously simple and gorgeously modelled. Love it with the pink coat!
    My sewing is stalled at the moment. But it will return, and this is definitely on the cards. Thanks! Xo Jazzy Jack

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Stalled sewing. I hope it's not too serious. Or something equally as creative and satisfying is taking it's place meanwhile.
      Of course it is. Creativity never really stops.

      Delete
  10. Replies
    1. And that's a good thing. Your welcome, Chrissie.

      Delete
  11. I love the idea of a "20 minute dress" but anything involving sewing fabric together always takes way longer for me. The tutorial was too much for my current pneumonia-fogged brain to process.

    I never wake up from naps with any creative inspiration - damn!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pneumonia? Really? You have pneumonia now or are you being descriptive in your writing? I'm very literal, you know. Do take great care of yourself, plenty of rest, maybe some rat naps and drink lots of liquids. I had it and ended up in the hospital.

      Delete
  12. Best.tutorial.ever.written!!! :o) Really, it was clear and to the point, so I stand by that...BEST!

    You look fantastic as usual! Your ability to make "ugly" shoes look the coolest things ever is my favorite thing! I'm pretty sure it's the love you have for them, it brings out their very best. :o)

    JJ
    www.dressupnotdown.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ugly shoes! ahem, I only have interesting shoes, I tell ya. No traditional high heels here. no way.

      I guess that balances out the best tutorial ever written, though...

      Delete
  13. It's a paper doll dress! How cool. I think what really makes this garment work is the fabulous airy fabric you used. And of course the layered styling that is so you, pao!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Louisa,
      That's what I thought. Paper dolls, and dresses. I agree, it's the stretch mesh that makes it work.

      Delete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...