If this is your first time sewing a dress, don’t worry. I’ve been there. I know how intimidating the idea can be. However, the point is to have fun and let loose with your imagination. Who cares if you don’t get it right the first time?
I remember the first time I tried sewing a dress. I remember how daunting the idea seemed at first and how I felt sure that I was going to fail. Nevertheless, I decided that I would not let my fears hinder my creativity. I decided to sketch a simple design and focus on one step a time.
The design I’m going to share with you today is the same one I tried my first time designing a dress. My first experience sewing a dress showed me one very important thing: you don’t need to be a fashion designer to make your own design. I knew what styles of clothing I liked and began formulating an idea of how I wanted my dress to look. In the end, I created something simple and chic that I still love to wear today.
First, I wanted my design needed to be fairly simple. I didn’t want to spend too much time or money on this project. I just wanted something simple with clean, crisp lines.
Personally, I love it when I find pockets on a dress so I made sure to include some in my design.I also really like the bat wing style of sleeves, so I threw those in there as well.
As for my fabric of choice, well, the answer to that was a given. Linen!
What type of linen exactly though? There were so many weights and colors to consider! I finally settled on IL020 because I wanted something light to keep my dress from looking drab or too much like a shapeless smock. The color I chose was Duke Indigo; a darkish navy color that I think will be suitable for any season. I like the dark color because it’ll allow me to accessorize in a variety of ways.
I ordered two yards of linen for my dress and ended up having a little extra once I was done cutting it. It’s a good idea to wash and dry your linen before your begin making any clothing. Laundering before you measure and cut the fabric gets rid of any future shrinkage issues.
Once I made a sketch of my design on paper, I needed to make a pattern. The pattern would then be traced onto my fabric with chalk so I wouldn’t make any mistakes. The pattern shows two side views of my dress.
The first image shows the initial sketch I draw for my design. The second image shows the shape of the actual patterns I needed to cut.
In order to waste as little linen as possible, I traced my patterns onto my fabric onto a double-folded piece of fabric. The second middle image shows how I arranged these onto my fabric.
As the image shows, I doubled my linen and placed the folded edge on the left side. I then traced the front pattern along the folded left edge. This will leaves me with one single piece once cut. The back pattern is inverted next to the the front pattern. This does not have any folded edges and leaves me with two separate pieces of cut fabric.
Why did I cut the patterns like this? Well, as I said, I wanted to waste less linen. Also, I chose not to have the back be one single piece of linen. My plan is to have a seam going down the back of the garment that joins these two pieces. It is a detail I think will look nice on the dress, as well as keep the back looking more tidy by reducing the wrinkles caused while sitting.
Then I cut out each piece.