Hi there! My name is Shauna from shwin&shwin and I am so excited to be here today! I love all of these fun blog series I love the challenge they provide and all of the great blogger friends you meet! This series may be my favorite! As soon as the amazing ladies behind icandy invited me to be a part of the sundress series I knew just what I wanted to make. A while back I pinned this dress on pintrest. I knew I wanted to make it as a summer dress and I mixed it up a bit using some sunshine inspiration.
To make the pattern you will draw out 3 pieces a bodice, skirt and strap.
For the bodice take a top that fits well. (I find a tank is easiest to work with but any top will do) Fold the top down to the neck line. then decide how long you want the bodice piece to be and fold the top up or just draw a line ending it where you like. Trace the arm curve and sides. I traced the top on the fold.
Next for the skirt piece make it a few inches wider than the bodice so it will gather, and then make it as long as you want. (You will see two lines on mine, at first I made the under layer longer but I changed my mind at the end and made both layers the same length.)
The top of the picture is cut off but you will also want a strap piece that is wider than you want it to be (since it will gather) and the length should be long enough to go from the front bodice to the back bodice over the shoulder.
2 bodice pieces for the front cut on the fold
4 bodice pieces for the back not on the fold
2 skirt pieces on the fold for the top layer
2 skirt pieces on the fold for the under layer
2 bustle casings (will be explained later)
Start with the straps. Sew two pieces together along the long sides. Do this for both straps.
Turn them right side out and sew a basting stitch along the top and bottom then pull to gather.
Cut out two long strips from the under layer fabric (or any old scrap you may want to used) fold the two sides under and iron flat. Then fold pleats as you pin the strip to the bodice any way you like. I curved mine off to one side. Sew them in place along each side.
Next for the embroidery, I printed the words on the computer and then taped them in place to the front of the bodice piece. Then I held the bodice piece up to a window and on the back side I traced the letters with a marker. (you can use a washable fabric pencil if you rather)
That way when you are done you have the outline of the letters just showing through to the front.
Grab some embroidery floss and with a simple back stitch you have yourself some words.
Next take your straps and pin them in place on the bodice where you would like your straps to be.
Then take your other bodice piece and place it on top. You want the straps to be sandwiched in the middle. Then sew along the curve of the arm and the top. (not the sides)
Turn the pieces right side out and you should be done with the front of the bodice with the straps at the top.
Next lay two of the back bodice pieces out and then with the right side down lay your front bodice piece on top of it so the straps line up at the top of the back bodice piece.
Then place the other back bodice pieces on top creating another sandwich (but sadly not the edible kind:) Then sew the arm curve top and middle seam (not the outside side seam)
Now we will sew the side seams by matching up the front bodice with the back bodice at the side seam and sewing them together.
Then it should look like this.
We are almost done with the bodice. Next sew some button holes on one side.
And match it with buttons on the other side. Bodice done! Whew!
For the skirt. Start by sew the front and back skirt pieces together at the side seams. then hem the bottom. Do this for both layers.
Now for the top layer, (blue for me) Cut 2 rectangle strips out to create the casing for the bustle. They should be wide enough to sew two casings in for your ribbon, and long enough that it is maybe a few inches from the top and goes all the way to the bottom. Then fold all the edges under.
Pin the casings in place in the inside of the back of the skirt (outer layer) Make sure you space them nice and even. Sew along the two sides of the casings.
Then based on how wide your ribbon is sew a second line the width of the ribbon next to the side seams. Then you can slide your ribbon in place pulling just the ends out the top and leaving a good couple inches on the bottom. Sew along the top to secure the ribbon in place.
Then if you turn the skirt piece right side out you should have something that looks like this. Then if you tie the ribbons in a bow it should gather the bustle for you.
Line the outer layer and under layer up together at the top, and gather the two pieces together. (you can see the yellow is still longer, but I did change my mind after the dress was done)
With the skirt piece gathered, pin the bodice to the skirt so right sides are together. Then sew them together.
Then lastly I topstitched to secure everything in place. And you are done! Not too bad right?