Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Leather and Lace

So You Think You Can Sew
Finals: "Contestants Choice"

Well this is it... this is the big one!! I can't believe I have made it to the finals. There has been so much talent shown by all those who have competed. I feel so honored to be in this last round because of all of you who have voted so far! I have felt such love and support from family and friends. Thank you to all the new followers and commenters who have encouraged me along the way. I have gotten wonderful e-mails from other contestants wishing me luck and I appreciate the spirit of friendship and kindness. Also a huge shout out to those who have featured me on
 their own blogs. This whole process has been a wonderful experience in helping me push myself. 

Thank you to Ashley from Mommy by Day Crafter By Night 
for putting this together for all of us! 

Voting starts January 25th at 8:00 am EST and 
ends January 26th at 8:00 pm EST. 
You can vote from your computer, your phone, and your ipad... well anything that lets you cruise around on the internet really. You can only vote once per device. 

So here it is, the final project.
Inspired by the many beautiful lace dresses I have
 been seeing on pinterest.

Total Cost: Less than $20 which means my husband is happy and so am I.

 The side zip makes for a seamless back. 

The collar is all stitched in by hand.

I really don't know how to juggle, I think that is why I was laughing the whole time.
I was trying to avoid being hit with the falling oranges. :)

Hope you enjoyed following me on this crazy journey!! Thanks again for your support and your votes. 

If you are wondering what we are playing for, here are the prizes. 

The 1st Place winner will receive:

The 2nd Place Winner will receive:

The 3rd Place Winner will receive:

How to Make the Dress


2 Yards of Cream Lace
2 Yards of Black Stretch Cotton Poplin Spandex blend 
7 inch black Zipper
Hand Sewing Needle and Thread 

Step 1: Start with 2 yards of your black cotton poplin. Fold in half. 
Step 2: Find a dress that fits well and closely resembles the over all shape you want to achieve. (If you don't have a dress like that, then jump down to step 4.)
Step 3: Trace a chalk line around the skirt. (Remember to leave room for your hem as well as your seams.) I didn't include the top yet, only the bottom portion of the skirt.

Step 4: Find a shirt that resembles the type of basic silhouette you are going for. Trace the outlines of the shirt making sure you account for seam allowances and the zipper. (This is how I began for the shabby apple knock off dress) Follow the basic outline of how a skirt would fall. Shown in the above photos.
Step 5 - 6: Move the sleeve area over and trace the curve that is on the shirt. (I will show you how to do the sleeves in a minute)
Step 7: Taking the same shirt from above you are going to place it on top of a piece of paper. 
Step 8: Trace the outline.
Step 9: Add an extra .5 to an inch to the cuff part of your sleeve. (This will help when trimming for your seams) Also add room for your seam allowance on the top and bottom of your sleeve.

Step 10: Cut out the one side of your traced sleeve, stopping at the half way point.
Step 11: Fold over on the halfway line. (Make sure to get the angle right)
Step 12: Trace the other side.
Step 13: Cut out your sleeve pattern
Step 14: You should be able to place your pattern under the original sleeve to make sure you have accounted for your seams. 
Step 15: Place sleeve pattern on your fabric and trace with chalk. (You don't have to add extra space to this one because you have already accounted for the seam allowance.)

Step 16: This is what it should look like when you are done chalking.  
Step 17: Cut out your dress and sleeves.
Step 18: I separated my pieces and cut out basic neck lines.
Step 19- 24: Line up the bottom of your dress with the shell pattern on your lace fabric. (I messed up and cut my lace before I pinned my hem.) DON'T DO THAT!! Cut your lace after you pin your hem. That way the lace will hang down slightly lower than the hem of your black lining. Make sure your hems are equal and straight. 

Step 25: Now place your black fabric overtop your lace.
Step 26: Cut out your lace leaving at least 1.5 inches around all sides. Carefully sandwich your two lace pieces between the two black pieces of dress. (Just like an Oreo) 

Step 27: Now that your hem is pinned it is time to pin your sides.
Step 28: Fold back your lace on so that it lays flat to both sides of your black fabric. 
Step 29: Pin in place.

Step 30: Continue around the edge of your dress. Don't pin the sleeves or the shoulders of your dress.
Step 31: When you come to the right side of your dress, about an inch below the sleeve line, start pinning for your zipper. Remember you are going to want at least an inch on both sides of your seams to pin your zipper in place later!! Just as a tip I use different colored pins to indicate hem lines, zippers, an straight seams. It helps me remember what I am doing when I get to my sewing machine. 
Step 32: Begin sewing your hem. Make sure you don't include your lace in the hem!!
Step 33: Right before you get to your side seams stop your needle, back stitch and fold your lace down and include it in your seam. (This will help everything stay nice) 
Step 34: Continue on to the edge of your seam, backstitch and then finish. 
Step 35: Now you are ready to continue up the sides.  

Step 36: I pressed my seams once I was done sewing them.
Step 37: When you get to the zipper portion of your dress back stitch a few times and then turn your stitch length to 4. Run your basting stitch up the zipper portion of your dress. 
Step 38: This is what your dress should look like when you are done. 
Step 39: Find your basting stitch portion of your dress and press
your seam open.
Step 40: Place your zipper on top of your seam so that the center of your zipper is aligned with your seam line. Pin in place.

Step 41: Sew in your zipper like it says on your zipper instructions.
Step 42: I used black thread but you could use cream.
Step 43: Once you are done carefully unpick your basting stitch. 
Step 44: Make sure you don't catch any of your lace!!
Step 45: This is how your zipper should look when it is done.
Step 46: Now we are moving on the the neck line. I carefully traced out a line about 7.5 inches wide. As seen below.
Step 47: Snip little tabs in the neck line so that you can fold it over more easily. (Don't snip too far or it will show on the other side and fray. 

Step 48: Use the same tab method for the outer sleeve part. Press down so they stay flat.
Step 49: Fold over your lace on your shoulder portion of your dress 
and sew down. 

Step 50: Sew down the tabs on your sleeves as well s the bottom portion of the sleeve. 

Step 51: Here is what it looks like when it is right side out.  

Step 52: Place your sleeve on top of your folded lace. 

Step 53: Cut out your lace, leaving your extra space for overlap.
Step 54: Make your lace tabs and iron down flat.
Step 55: Sew down your lace, around the outer sleeve edge. Try to stay on the line you previously sewed.
Step 56: It should look like this while you are sewing. 
Step 57: Remember to leave the other side of the lace alone. It will look like this when you flip it right side out.
Step 58: Fold your sleeve in half and sew the bottom piece together. (I like to go over mine a few times to ensure that it will hold) You don't want to rip a hole in the underarm area of your dress)

Step 59: This is what it should look like when you flip it right side out.
Step 60: Now gently open up the sleeve hole in your dress and slide the sleeve inside like the picture shows. 
Step 61: Pin in place while folding over your lace edge.
Step 62: It should look like this.
Step 63-64: Once pinned you can check to make sure it is right by pulling the sleeve out. If it looks like this, then you are good to go and sew it. 
Step 65: This is is also the time to sew down the tabs on your neck lines.

Step 66: Don't sew down your lace with your neck lines!! Make sure to leave it out.
Step 67: It should look like this.
Step 68: The back side... see how you don't see any stitch marks.
Step 69: Once everything is sewn down and ironed  it is time to cut the extra lace. 
Step 70: Trim your lace so that it is close to your neckline. Don't cut it too close because the lace will hang down when your dress is on. 
Step 71: Should look something like this.

Step 72: Cut out a scalloped edge from your left over lace. You will want 3 pieces cut. 2 for the front side and one for the back of the neck.
Step 73: Cut them by measuring the length of the neck lines.
Step 74: Place them on top of your dress to see how they will look the best. (I left a small gap between the lace pieces once it hit the bottom point of the neck line. 
Step 75: Carefully! Trim your lace so that it slowly gets larger as you move up the neck line. (See how I started really close to the edge on the bottom and got slightly larger as I went up.)
Step 76 - 79: Fold and iron the extra lace that is on your dress. Using a needle and thread begin by whipstitching your lace in place. Make sure you hit as many points on the lace as possible. Don't leave any gaps or it will look funny. Basically you are going to whipstitch your lace pieces together all around your neck line. Once you want to join the scalloped pieces together, try on your dress and safety pin together where it falls the nicest on the neckline. Whipstitch those and trim edges slightly. You don't want to trim too close though or you run the risk of ripping your lace.

Congratulations my friend, you just made a lace dress!!


Unknown January 24, 2012 at 9:04 PM  

looks fantastic. you are gorgeous, as always, and I ADORE this dress! :)

The Matthews Family January 25, 2012 at 5:30 AM  

Love it! Good luck, Ashley!!!

Anonymous January 25, 2012 at 6:00 AM  

Incredible Ashley!!! I didn't get to see you on Sunday, but WOW!! Soooo gorgeous. Truly beautiful, you and the dress!!

Havalah Turner | Sisters, What! January 25, 2012 at 7:02 AM  

it is beautiful, Great job!

Unknown January 25, 2012 at 7:02 AM  

Great job on the dress! I love it! It's been so much fun to see everything you have created in this competition! You are so talented!

diana January 26, 2012 at 4:19 PM  

I totally voted, can I do it more than once?? I love your pictures and the dress!

Cari January 27, 2012 at 11:48 AM  

I LOVE this and I'm totally going to make it this weekend! I totally wanted you to win but you did an amazing job. I loved all your entries on sytycs

Unknown January 27, 2012 at 1:29 PM  

For the record, I voted for you. :)

Jillian January 27, 2012 at 10:29 PM  

This dress is so awesome, Ashley! You made sewing in the zipper look so easy! I've always been intimidated by zippers, but I might have to try one now. :) Love all the pics of your cute face, too.

Cindy May 28, 2012 at 8:32 AM  

wow,very cute! love the white over it. bethany (cindys grand girl)


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