For sewers with teenage daughters, Spring always means Mom, can you make me a dress for the (insert: dance, semi-formal, prom)?when my daughters were young I did a lot of sewing for them, but now that they’re older they like shopping and that’s fine, it means I can sew for myself. However, when prom season rolls around they know Mom can make them something much nicer than anything they could buy in a store for the same cost. So between now and the end of June I have two dresses to make for the Thurston Middle School 8th Grade Semi-Formal. Here’s what they chose:
Emma McCalls 6283
A couple months ago Emma gave me a tearsheet from Seventeen for this $296 Terani mermaid gown. She wants a cocktail dress version, basically the whole look without the mermaid hem. McCalls 6283 is a perfect pattern and is virtually identical to the original. This style is in McCalls Create it! series and the instructions include a croquis so that budding designers can style their own dress. I love that idea and Ill hold onto this pattern. Em wants the fashion fabric to be a textured Thai Silks silk/linen blend with 1 inch black silk satin ribbon for embellishment. Construction on this will use tried -nd-true couture technique. Ill make a boned corselet and the dress will attach to the corselet on the top of the bodice. Susan Kahljes website has steel boning and there a several web sources for genuine silk satin ribbon. The biggest challenge is all of those buttonholes for the ribbon, I need to think more about how Ill make them. I think an oaktag template for marking and a whisper light machine embroidery stabilizer under the fabric might be the way to go. I might even make the buttonholes first onto blocks of fabric and then cut out the pattern pieces.
Abigail McCalls 6201
Abbys dress is not as complex, a few months ago she saw McCalls 6201 and loved it exactly as it appeared in the catalog. She wants View C in the same blue-purple fabric as the original. An FBA is built in this pattern and Ill need that for Abby. A silk charmeuse should work well here; the shoulder embellishment will be mesh-covered jewels in a couple different shapes from M&J Trimming. No boning needed on this dress, most of the work here will be in making the shoulder pads and embellishments. The jewels are sew-on and I think the shoulder pads will need to be slightly formed and lightly padded, maybe wool felt steamed into shape . I don’t want the stitches that attach the jewels to pucker the underlying fashion fabric.
Ill do muslins for both dresses although there should not be much fitting to do, both girls dance 15+hours week and they’re in perfect shape.