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Topic: Halterneck 50s style dress with shrug  (Read 20091 times)
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Mangetout
« on: February 10, 2006 08:12:48 AM »

Hello!
I'm fairly new to Craftster - i've been lurking around for a couple of weeks now and i've finally built up enough courage to start my first thread about my very first sewing project!

My close friend is marrying in May, and i wanted to wear a fabulous dress, but one that will flatter my larger-than-average figure.
I'm going to be making McCalls pattern 4286 with a shrug (to cover my hideously fat arms) - McCalls pattern 5006 (the long sleeved one with the ties in front).

What I want to ask though - I would like to have a net skirt underneath the dress to 'poof' it out a bit and make it a bit more 1950s-esque (but still modern...) ....does anyone have any hints or tips about how to do this?
I've got some lovely blue tulle to match the fabric for the dress but i've been staring at it for half an hour now and nothing has come to me  Undecided

Any ideas you have would be very welcome Smiley
« Last Edit: February 10, 2006 08:24:36 AM by Mangetout » THIS ROCKS   Logged
sideCRASHcars
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2006 08:50:58 AM »

yea this really doesn't help but i have that pattern as well. and want to make it poof as well :]] haven't actually got to it yet because i'm setting up a sewing space in a new and much smaller room. just thought i'd share. <3
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« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2006 09:17:46 AM »

Hey there,

I'd suggest typing tulle into the search bar above and sift through what comes up. Lots of good tips on how to work with the material. I think you'll find your answer there. Sorry I wasn't more directly helpful.
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TheDishclothQueen
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2006 09:39:58 AM »

If you don't want to wing a pattern, try going thru the costume portion of the pattern book.  Frequently, they'll have underskirts in there to go under period costumes.
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« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2006 03:24:53 PM »

Not that I am an expert in sewing, butI am _somewhat_ of an expert in vintage clothing...
One tip I can give is to keep the underskirt "pouff" portion to the lower portion of the skirt only. I have found that the dream of a lovely full puffy skirt is dashed when you put it on and realize that it makes you look two times your actual size. It works best for me (big butt and thighs) if I keep the hips and waist somewhat fitted and have tulle (or pouff of choice) from the knees down. You'll end up with more of an hourglass effect that way. If it is pouff fullness all the way down it just emphasises the thickness in the middle - really badly!  Shocked
I hope my 2 cents helps you avoid a nighmare!
RRR
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« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2006 08:45:33 PM »

I agree with nixing the poofiness around the waist.  One thing you can do is use the pattern you already have-- it seems that the halter dress consists of skirt, belt-like midsection, and halter top?  Use the skirt portion to make a skirt of netting.  You could make the first top foot or two of it from muslin or something else fairly thin, and then hem the netting to that, and have an effective underskirt that matches the size of the dress...

Sorry if I haven't explained that right.  I'm sure there have to be some better terms to describe it.
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Mangetout
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2006 09:20:32 AM »

That's really helpful, thank you all.
I'm going to do what you suggest and not make the full skirt from netting - just the bottom section.
I'll try muslin around the top Smiley

Thank you!  Grin
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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2006 09:49:30 AM »

You could make a crinoline style skirt to wear under it (and possibly other pieces). I have one from the 50's that is fairly fitted and straight skirt cut(and is a muslin type material like Mirrorforthesun wisely suggested) and then the bottom has two layered tiers of heavy tulle that start at around 2" above the knee that are sewn to the fitted skirt. Where you put the tiers would depend on the lenght of the skirt, but you get the idea.  I totally expect to see pix of the finished product! RRR
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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2006 09:55:44 AM »

Wow - gorgeous dress!

About the tulle skirt.

I'm going to be making Burda 8174 (http://www.burdamode.com/8174_Dress,1270778-1172169-1172177-1156859,enEN.html), View C (http://www.burdamode.com/8174_Dress_Detailed_View,1000017-1270778-1172169-1172177-1156859-1156866-1156868,enEN.html;jsessionid=75BD6300B72C85DCA0E0EF0A7D0D32EF) for my Textiles GCSE exam.

I've looked at the pattern, and skirt portion, with the tulle, is an outer skirt. Then there is a lining, which is about 12" shorter, with tulle gathered & attatched to it.

Does that help a little? (Basically, there's only tulle at the bottom.)
« Last Edit: February 11, 2006 11:05:23 AM by nushybum » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2006 10:57:06 AM »

that burda dress is exactly what you want to do...

i'd say everyone has the right idea... just make a similar skirt in a really light fabric and about 8 inches of tulle...  for the underskirt, use the original skirt pattern, just shorten it, and sew it in with the outer skirt layer.

for the tulle... if you want a lot, do it in more  sections, but that might be a bit overboard.   what i would do is:

-cut 4 pieces of tulle that are 8 inches high and the length of the tulle you had cut...  the longer it is, the more body it will have... i'd do a yard and a half or two yards (just a warning, this much tulle is super annoying to work with, but worth it)
-along the long edge, baste stitch two pieces of tulle together- -leave your end threads long
-pull the back thread and scootch the tulle over, to scrunch it. 
-when that piece of tulle fits half way around the bottom of your underskirt, stop scrunching. 
-sew over your baste stich so that your scrunching will stay in place.
-do this to the remaining pieces of tulle
-sew together short ends of tulle
-attach sewn end of tulle to underskirt, with your side seems on the side
-look pretty in your pretty dress!
 

it's a really pretty pattern.  i'd love to see a pic when you finish! good luck!
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« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2006 11:06:47 AM »

There's also this, https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=53082.0, a nice tute on how to make a lined petticoat out of tulle, with or without a bow. One tip in there that I especially liked (thinking about doing it but haven't yet) is using the edge of the tulle so you don't have to muck with hemming it. If you do something like that then you'll have a re-usable or by-itself-wearable tulle skirt too.
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Trixiebelle
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2006 01:27:31 PM »

     I really needed a crinoline quick for Halloween so I  went to the thrift shore and bought a half slip and an old prom dress and cut the tulle pouff out of it and sewed it onto the slip.  I've since used it under other dresses.   
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Mangetout
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2006 03:21:12 AM »

Oh you guys are all so helpful, you've given me loads of ideas! Thank you so much!

I'm starting to wonder if i've taken on too big a project for my first one though - it was a new year's resolution of mine to learn how to sew my own clothes but i perhaps should've started with a circle skirt!  Cheesy

Don't tell anyone, but when the pattern said to 'baste' the edges together, I had to look it up on the internet....I had visions of covering it in meat juice!  Cheesy

Oh and I will totally post a piccie when it's finished!
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« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2006 07:20:18 AM »

Oh you guys are all so helpful, you've given me loads of ideas! Thank you so much!

I'm starting to wonder if i've taken on too big a project for my first one though - it was a new year's resolution of mine to learn how to sew my own clothes but i perhaps should've started with a circle skirt!  Cheesy

Don't tell anyone, but when the pattern said to 'baste' the edges together, I had to look it up on the internet....I had visions of covering it in meat juice!  Cheesy

Oh and I will totally post a piccie when it's finished!

pshh!  don't think that way.  it's really not that bad, but the tulle does get hard to scrunch at times.   

what you might want to do is combine all of our suggestions.  buy a slip and sew the tulle onto that!  it cuts down half of the sewing and the time!
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ms.cate
« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2006 07:55:04 PM »

I've done M4286

here's a pic
[http://public.fotki.com/hanoicasey/nye__weekender/dsc00535.html]


I didnt put anything under besides lining as it was 45 degrees on NYE (its summer here-very hot). Same reason for no shrug

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ms.cate
« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2006 08:14:15 PM »

I should mention, thats me at 7am on New Year's day (still boiling hot) rather tanked outside a club. The ribbon usually sits on the waist.
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Mangetout
« Reply #16 on: February 13, 2006 03:10:43 AM »

Ooo that looks pretty...i love the ribbon! I hadn't thought of adding ribbon, was just going to do it without, but i might now.

I've made up the dress but I think I've mucked up the gathers on the skirt - it seems a bit 'full' (i.e. unflattering) but that might be my hips underneath it, rather than the skirt itself...!  Grin
Or it could be the fact that it's cotton fabric, so it won't soften until i've washed it... It looks a bit like a mushroom at the moment - sort of like this:


I'm going to reserve judgement until i've finished the net underskirt, but if i really really hate it I might have to unpick it and see if I can do a less gathered skirt...  Huh

« Last Edit: February 13, 2006 04:09:49 AM by Mangetout » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2006 05:50:35 AM »

Wow, I love this board!!  Everyone has given such great ideas on this project and I am learning a lot, eventhough I am not making this right now.  But I do like historical type costumes etc., and I always think I look extra fat in them.  You all have given me hope.  I am just learning so much from everyone, it is so exciting. 
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« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2006 06:57:01 AM »

Ahhh the eternal mushroom issue...
I have this problem with _every_ modern dress of this cut, but I do not with vintage ones and I have found that the difference is
 (a) vintage fabrics are really well worn in and fall better (so you're onto something there) 
and (b) the waist is cut much higher in vintage garments - so the place where is starts to fall is actually smaller than where your hips start. It's weird, but it works. (for me anyway, but I am high waisted)
Unfortunately, if you have SUPER mushroom - and it looks like it is standing out like that on it's own (on a hanger), you will probably have to start over.  Cry
If you have another skirt or dress that is similar and falls well - gauge how much you should gather the skirt portion by how much the other skirt is gathered. (sometimes this works with ALOT more gathering and sometimes it works with less - depending on the fabric)
ANd - even if all of this sounds like garbage to you - take it as words of encouragement!! Go you!!!  Wink
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« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2006 08:31:53 AM »

I'm still laughing at the idea of basting the dress with au jus  Grin
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Mangetout
« Reply #20 on: February 13, 2006 08:43:51 AM »

You guys are so seriously helpful....I really can't say thank you enough  Smiley

Update!
I rang my mum (my doyenne of all things both sewing and curvy) and she suggested taking the skirt apart and converting it into an A-line.... to quote said doyenne - 'well of course it looks odd - a gathered skirt will make you look pregnant, love, with your tummy'  Roll Eyes

So the plan tonight is to unpick all my careful slipstitching  Cry

Disclaimer: No meat juice has been involved in the making of this dress....
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« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2006 09:03:33 AM »

you are so funny. 
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ms.cate
« Reply #22 on: February 13, 2006 08:54:56 PM »

You just reminded me, I had to lose the gathered skirt and take it in also as I looked mega preggers in the dress the way it was on pattern (damn misleading drawing).

If I make it again i wouldnt do quite so much basting!
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Mangetout
« Reply #23 on: February 14, 2006 02:23:01 AM »

you are so funny.

Kiss Thank you! Grin

Quote
You just reminded me, I had to lose the gathered skirt and take it in also as I looked mega preggers in the dress the way it was on pattern (damn misleading drawing).


It is a misleading drawing isn't it?!!
When I think of how long it took me to get the gathers right in the first place...  Cheesy
« Last Edit: February 14, 2006 02:24:36 AM by Mangetout » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2006 12:38:16 AM »

If you'd like to make a little bit of pouf but not so much like a ballgown, I'd suggest just folding the tulle to make some gentle pleats. It'll (should) give you just enough oomph.
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« Reply #25 on: February 24, 2006 11:41:53 PM »

oh! oh!
I've just found this thread. I reallly hope you still plan to post pictures of the finished dress! : )
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libragirl
« Reply #26 on: February 25, 2006 11:01:47 PM »

I hope this is not too late....but I just made a 50's style dress with a A-line bottom....try Simplicity 4581
it is really pretty on and nice for a curvy 50's look.
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« Reply #27 on: February 28, 2006 09:14:22 PM »

It has probably already been said, but I am going to throw my 2 cents in anyways.  If you do make a tulle skirt for underneath, don't attach all the tulle at only the waist band, because then, you will have HUGE poof at the waist and nothing at the bottom (unless you want that) the first tulle skirt that I made ended like that, and was horribly unflattering. thankfully i cut it up and make other stuff out of it.  Anyways, I'd say make a sort of slip type thing that you can attach tulle onto, adding more the further you get to the bottom, so that you get and even full flare.  Anyhoo, good luck with the dress. Over and out.
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Mangetout
« Reply #28 on: March 24, 2006 05:59:59 AM »

The dress...erm...didn't exactly go as planned Sad  It looked horrible, so i changed the skirt for the skirt out of another pattern, but ended up measuring wrong and so cut the skirt too small.  It made me look *awful*

I think, basically, I started too big when I should've started smaller...so I put it to one side and have been playing around making simpler things for a while.

I am determined that it won't beat me though!  So i do plan on picking it up again...but just maybe in a couple of months time once i've had more practice  Embarrassed  (and have bought some more fabric!!)

Thank you all for your great advice though, its much appreciated  Kiss
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« Reply #29 on: March 24, 2006 08:03:53 PM »

I just wanted you to know, Mangetout, that I am really glad you posted this even if your dress is going to be sidelined for a while. I just bought some fabric to make myself a similar dress and I've already learned a lot from reading this thread. Good luck on your sewing projects and thanks for starting this topic!!!
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« Reply #30 on: March 25, 2006 06:32:25 PM »

This may be slightly off topic, but I just thought I'd mention...if you've decided to make a tulle underskirt, and you've figured out your pattern, you might want to consider making your own half-slip, too. Tulle is very itchy against the skin, and you're probably going to want a half slip with a bit more body (and a proper length) underneath than the average ones you can get at the store. The slip can be built similarly to the tulle underskirt, with a hem that's just and inch or two higher than the other layers.

I'm sure whatever you come up with, it will be beautiful. Wink
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