Progress continues on my burgundy satin dress – #125 from Burda 11/2006…
Lost in Translation:
“Work from the inside to baste support strips to lower edges of sleeves so that the edge lies even with the hem allowances. Overlap ends of support strips. Neaten hem allowances, catching outer edge of support strips. Sew inside edges of support strips on at the seams. Lay hem allowances to inside, but do not press the edges. Sew hem allowances in place by hand.”
Maybe I’m thick, but it took several reads, many huh?’s, wtf’s, umms and errs, biting of nails and even reading slowly aloud to self, to finally click that Burda’s sewing instructions are basically saying “insert sleeve hem stiffening“! It all makes sense once you know, but isn’t it amazing how the gist of things can get lost in translation? I have read quite a few comments in blogland about Burda’s confusing instructions, and I think I now know what you all mean!
So here’s my interpretation of what to do, in case you are like me and suffered mental paralysis when you read that paragraph. I cut my sleeve support strips in some fairly stiff nylon petticoat net:
Baste them to the sleeve hem, overlapping the ends:
Neaten the hem edges if you are not lining the dress. I will line my dress, so I’m leaving the hem edges as is.
Attach the other edge of the net strip to the dress at the three seams, or in my case I am catchstitching the whole thing to the organza. This is the beauty of underlining – you can attach everything seamlessly inside!
Now turn up the 3cm sleeve hem, folding it around the net, and sew your hem.
The idea is to have a smooth folded edge for the hem, so don’t press it flat!
Attaching the facing:
I blockfused my facings using a lightweight knit fusing. Because my main fabric is quite stretchy, I applied the fusing in the opposite direction to normal to minimise stretch, ie crossgrain of fusing to lengthwise grain of fabric.
I understitched around the facing by machine – I actually wanted to do it by hand for this dress but I machined it out of habit! I suppose I could unpick it and redo it when I install the zip, which I also want to do by hand…..
Yay, it fits!
At this stage I hadn’t even tried the dress on, and needed to check the fit properly before I attached the skirt. I sewed in a temporary invisible zip and it fitted really well – sorry no pics! Usually I have to shorten the bodice because I am short-waisted but it looks like it is sitting correctly at the waist – so if you are normal-waisted you might have a length alteration to do!
The skirt underlining:
I underlined the skirt with silk organza too, but used a slightly different method to the bodice. I first sewed the skirt panels together, then the organza panels together. Then placing them wrong sides facing together I stitched the pleats in place through both layers – don’t they look luscious?!
The end of the zip:
At the CB seam, I did a trick that I often do when I use double layers – I sewed the main fabric from the hem up to the zip notch, then clipped to the seamline 1″ below the zip notch:
but sewed the organza to only 1″ below the zip notch:
Clip the organza seam at this point and press the lower part open so it faces the main fabric, but press the upper 1″ to the inside. Now bring the pieces wrong sides together, and sew the last 1″ altogether:
You need to be accurate when you do this so you don’t get a bump in the seam, but making the clip away from the stress point makes the end of the zip stronger.. Here’s what you end up with on the wrong side:
and the right side:
all ready to insert a zip – which is what I am going to do tomorrow!
After attaching the skirt, I spent a while this afternoon catch-stitching everything together, and I also taped the waistline to the pattern measurement. Here’s some pics of the inside pre-lining:
Just the lining, zip and hem to go now – hopefully we’ll have some pics of the outside soon!