Thursday, January 03, 2013

Ponte and Faux Leather Dress - Part 2

Deciding how to place the ponte and faux leather pieces on the front of the dress was the most challenging aspect of this dress.  Even the actual sewing was anti-climatic to the planning.  This is what I finally decided upon...


...and here it is sewn together and pressed flat.



I'm so glad that I took the time to make a road map on the dress front pattern because even with numbering the pattern pieces, I got confused for a minute. The other thing that was important is that none of the pieces on the front or back were serge finished. I was concerned that the stitching would show to the other side when pressed flat.  I did a lot of pressing with steam and used the clapper to get these pieces to lay flat.


The sewing of the back pieces was easy compared to the front since it's just two bands of the faux leather sewn to the ponte knit making it very easy to construct.


The back of the dress also has an invisible zipper.  I deliberately chose to shorten my 22" zipper to 14" which will end right before the first faux leather band.  Why?  Do you remember this dress?  Well I inserted an invisible zipper in the back and with all the bulk, I've worn the dress twice.  Both times I've held my breathe praying the zipper wouldn't pop in the back.  I don't want that for this dress.

The back was also basted together at the waistband leather insert.  This was so that there wouldn't be any drag when I sewed the back together.  I hate that little jag of difference that can occur and this is an easy solution, which made it all come together seamlessly.


The original dress has leather piping at the neckline.  After searching through my piping collection, I found some faux leather piping I made about 15 years ago that will work perfectly with this dress especially since I only need to add piping at the neckline.


I've run out of black lace for lining hems so I turned it under and stitched the hem flat.  After that I finished the armholes.  I deliberated over using binding to finish the armholes or just a fold, press and stitch down technique.  Ultimately I folded, pressed and stitched down with a twin needle and was surprised with how well this finish looked and worked. The hem was also stitched with a twin needle and it was done.  However, this dress really doesn't look as good on the hanger as it does on me, so the reveal will be in a few days.

To all of you who left comments about making your own copy of the dress, I say go for it!  But can I give you a few tips...  

  • One - I'm a huge fan of steam.  I probably use it alot more than I'm suppose to but I love it.  Please, please be careful using steam on the faux leather.  You can easily "bruise" the leather.
  • Two - make sure that the faux leather and the ponte are compatible in weight.  My dress works because both fabrics are similar in weight.
  • Three - starting with a proven dress pattern will make this exercise so much easier.
  • Four - Take your time and number ALL of your pieces.  You can't believe how easy it was to get lost!
  • Five - use a good press cloth.  I used a silk organza one.

Finally if you do make your own version, please leave a comment on the final reveal post, with a link to your dress.  I would love to see it!

Now I know that I probably should make the dayum pink wool crepe dress next but since I have a few more days, I'm going to work with the eggplant/purple fabric next and another new pattern.

...as always more later!




33 comments:

  1. This is looking fantastic. Can't wait for the final reveal.

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  2. Wow, I can't believe I missed your planning post, but this is going to be one humdinger of a dress. Can't wait to see it finished and on you. Awesome!

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  3. Looking good. Awaiting the reveal with bated breath.

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  4. Dear Carolyn,
    Your new dress looks promise.

    I like to read about your fashion journeys. You make wonderful cloth and I learn every times. Thank you therefor.

    Best wishes for the new Year.
    Mema

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  5. Your creation is like an intricate puzzle...put the pieces together and it is magic. Great job.

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  6. The dress is coming together beautifully.

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  7. That is looking VERY cool!!

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  8. This is going to be one hott number!

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  9. Amazing! The dress is beautiful and your map on putting it together is wonderfully detailed. I too am looking forward to the reveal.

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  10. This is going to be your best dress ever! Happy stitching.

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  11. After viewing *hold my cheeks in hand and then faints*. This is beautiful Carolyn. I am so jealous of your talent and eye for beautiful. Please keep sharing.

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  12. This is going to be so fab-u-lous! Thanks for all the tutorials.

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  13. Your skills are just amazing! What beautiful work.

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  14. Wow, your dress is really coming together! I can't wait to see the finished outfit.

    I'm a long time reader and I love how you take an inspiration garment and make it your own! You're a true inspiration!

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  15. The dress is amazing! I can't wait to see you rock it! You did awesome work and I am totally blown away.

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  16. Very cool. I look forward to seeing the finished dress.

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  17. This dress is looking fantastic, I can't wait to see it finished!

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  18. I love your design and can't wait to see it on!

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  19. !I LOVE this dress and have been wanting to do a leather mix material project. Can't wait to see it on you!!

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  20. Thanks so much for your blog! I found it last week and, believe it or not, have been catching up from your first post - right now, I'm at July 2007. I worked from home for many years as I raised my son, then got laid off and have an interview next week for a "corporate job" and started panicking because I have absolutely no work clothes left. The last time I worked full time in an office was about 9 years and 50 pounds ago;-) Then I found your blog and suddenly all was right with the world again. The panic ended as I realized that, like you, I could have well-fitting clothes that looked great in beautiful fabric and that I didn't have to go to work in Walmart clothes and be ashamed!

    Thank you so much!

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  21. At the risk of sounding like one or two others...I can't wait for the reveal. It looks fabulous on the table!

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  22. Happy New Year Carolyn :) ! I love how your new dress is coming together. I wonder if a mini-version of your TNT dress pattern on A4 / Letter paper showing the road-map of the jigsaw pattern pieces would serve as a) a handy reminder of what goes where, and b) a useful easy to access n view at a glance version to file away on top of the full-size pieces when you store them? (P.S. I guess a mini version of your TNT pattern F + B could also be used a little like a Croqui when planning new iterations of your favourite pattern too :) ?)

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  23. Argh. you're such a tease woman!! It looks amazing flat...can't wait to see it in 3-D!! :D

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  24. Woo hoo! Keep up the good work, I can't wait to see you model it! Thanks for posting that pic of your "roadmap", as it helped me realize that I will need a similar technique for an upcoming project! ;)

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  25. As usual, this looks like a winner, I cannot wait to see it on you!

    I ran thru the last few posts and didn't see a reference to the faux leather...is it a stretch faux leather, how can you press it and not melt it? any recommended places to purchase it?

    I "hate "how you can pull off all of these designer looks! I think I need to move to the Metro area!

    I think this would also look good in a spring color and sleeveless.

    Thanks for keeping my creative juices flowing!

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  26. Wow! That is one amazing dress. It is good to know you use your super powers for good and not evil. ;) I had a plan once for a gored skirt with multiple panels, divided by piping in a kind of wavy design to the gores. It was a knockoff of something I saw a woman wearing in a store. After thinking about it for months I realized I didn't want to work that hard on something I would only wear rarely. Your dress inspires me to quit being so lazy. Even if I don't get it sewed the drafting would be fun.

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  27. Ooh, this is looking really good! Like everyone else, I can't wait for the reveal. I was also tempted to make the dress - will keep you posted! (And thank you for the inspiration!)

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  28. This dress is looking stunning! Thank you so much for sharing all your tips... now just have to find the right pattern and pluck up the courage to give this a go.

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  29. The dress is looking great! Nice work! It's wonderful when your vision comes to life:) I also think it's cute you had 15 yo self made piping in your stash. It's good to hold onto some stuff, never know when you'll need it again!

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  30. Wow. This is looking SO COOL! I love how organized you stayed throughout this project-- seems like the ticket to success!

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  31. Your AMAZING!!!!! can't wait to see the final reveal. xx

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  32. Ponte and faux leather must be in the air because I have just finished one on my blog. Yours looks like it will be gorgeous and very sexy!

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  33. Love that! Can't wait for the modeled shot!

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