Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Pleated Dress...creation

To create the pattern for the pleated dress, I started with a basic sheath...a dress with darts but no waist seam. (I'll post my PMB style sheet at the end of this post).

I copied and mirrored the FRONT piece so I would have a complete FRONT pattern.

Next I created the 'tab'. I located a point on the neckline that was 1" from the center front. I wanted my tab to be 1.5" wide, so I created a circle around the bust point that was also 1.5" in diameter. Then I drew a line from the point on neck to the side of the bust circle. I OFFSET that line by 1.5" to create the other side of the tab...then I decided to shorten the ends to be 2" away from the bust point (after the muslin, however, I reduced this amount to 1"). I rotated the right bust dart to this tab, putting half of the dart on each side.

Next I had to decide on the location of the pleats. This was kind of trial and error, using what looked right. Once I was happy with the location of the pleats, I rotated the left bust dart to the lowest pleat line. I KNEW this would create a pleat that was much too large, but once sewn, the excess fabric in the back could be removed, so that this pleat would have a seam instead of a fold.

I had a harder time with the placement of the 3 smaller darts on the right of the tab. To be sure I liked the way they lookeed, I printed my front pattern in quarter scale and folded the little darts and pleats closed. I could tell I didn't love the first attempt (on the left), so I respaced the pleats and moved them closer to the neckline. Nope, that wasn't it either (middle one)...so I respaced them a third time...better. Now it was time to try this is fabric.

I marked all the darts/pleats on my fabric and began sewing. First, I basted the horizontal pleats and sewed the vertical waist darts.

Then I put a row of stitching about 0.5" away from the basting on that large pleat that is also the dart...that stitching will be permanent. At this point, I wondered if it might be a good idea to stitch close to the fold on EACH of the pleats, so they would tend to be neater...(?). Not being sure, I did go ahead and do that stitching. On the 'real' dress, I omitted that, though.

Once the pleats were done, I could stitch...baste...both sides of the 'tab'. Like the big dart, this one also had to have 'real' stitching (permanent) that was about .5" away from the basting, because this pleat is also a dart.

At this point, it occurred to me that once the basting of the tab is removed, it will 'spread', and that is NOT a good thing...so it would need to be stabilized. I used hand stitches to keep the dart folds close to each other, to prevent the spreading.

This is the muslin on my dress form. It was a good fit, but I felt like there was a but too much fullness UNDER the bust. I wanted the vertical waist darts to be closer to center, so I decided to reduce the distance between bustpoints...which meant I had to completely redo the pattern! And FYI, this turned out NOT to be a great idea...I should have left the location alone, or at least, not move it the full INCH that I did! :)

Here, the pleats are still basted closed. But you can kinda get the idea, I hope!

Next time, I'll show the 'real thing'!

Here are my design choices:

Style Details

Style Name: 100615_basic_sheath
Date: 6/15/2010
Last Update: April 1, 2010
Chart: Trish 050710_waist_HIP

Garment Type: Sheath
Style: Classic Sheath
Closure: Back Zipper
Front Neckline: Jewel
Back Neckline: Jewel

Hemline Sweep: Tapered
Back Kick Pleat: Yes
Front Darts: Side
Back Darts: No Darts
Sideseam Shape: Fitted

Front Waist Darts: 1
Back Waist Darts: 2

Front Neckline Depth: 1.5
Back Neckline Depth: 1.375
Neckline Width: 2.5
Neckline Point: 0
Back Neckline Shape Right: 1 clicks

Armhole Depth: 0
Dart Override: 0

Side/Arm Point: -1
Side/Waist Point: 1
Side/Hip Point: 0

Cf/Extension: 0
Cb/Extension: 0

Shoulder Pad: 0
Shoulder Point: -0.375

Sheath Length: Knee
Finished Cb/Hem Length: 40
Hip Depth: 8
Kick Pleat Height: 8

Bust Pt Vertical: 10.25
Bust Pt Horizontal: 4.5
Upper Front Dart Length: 1
Upper Back Dart Length: 0
Lower Front Dart Length: 8
Lower Back Dart Length: 5.5
Back Shoulder Dart Length: 4

Sleeve Style: Facing
Sleeve Length: Wrist*** This is wrong; this was sleeveless (hence, the FACING).
Sleeve Cap Ease: 1.45
Sleeve Elbow Depth: 8
Sleeve Elbow Circum.: 10
Back Armhole Shape Up: 0.2 clicks
Back Armhole Shape Right: 0.2 clicks

Seam Allowance: 0.375
Hem Allowance: 2
Facing Width: 2

Chest Ease: 1
Waist Ease: 2
Hip Ease: 4.5

Body Measurements

Chest Circumference: 41.5
Back Shoulder Width: 15.75
Neck Circumference: 13
Natural Waist: 35
Hip Circumference: 41
Crotch Length: 29
Height: 66
Bra Cup Size: D
Center Front Length: 15
Front Shoulder Width: 15
Front Shoulder Slope: 18.5
Shoulder Length: 5
Center Back Length: 16.5
Back Shoulder Slope: 17.875
Bicep Circumference: 12
Notes: increased waist and decreased hip to 'real' (1" each)


Sew4Fun said...

Very interesting! Thanks for sharing all the diagrams showing the steps. Can't wait to see the real thing.

Angel Sadel said...

Nice Tutorial. Thanks.

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