DIY Eden Dress Tutorial
One of the most joyful things to emerge during these weird times was the Insta Rainbow Challenge hosted by Zeena Shah (@heartzeena) and Natalie Wall (@talliwall) back in April. With this challenge, these two ladies set a daily color prompt based on colors of the rainbow to brighten people's moods. The week-long challenge has long since ended but Zeena has kept the theme of wearing pink on Wednesdays going since this color seemed to resonate with people the most. Since I don't have much pink in my closet, I decided to rectify this so I can participate in the hashtag, On Wednesdays We Wear Pink (#onwednesndayswewearpink). I think this coral colored linen will make the perfect contribution. The pattern can be found in Simply Sewing Magazine's Etsy shop here.
LET'S GET STARTED!
- Wash and dry your fabric. Press in preparation for cutting. (Wrinkly fabric means less accurate cutting.)
- Take your bust, waist and hip measurements to determine what size to cut out of the pattern. I cut out a US size 6.
- Cut out your pattern pieces and lay them out on your fabric to cut, pinning them in place. Use your ruler to make sure your grainline is evenly parallel to the selvedge of the fabric. Mark all notches and pocket placements as noted on the pattern pieces, making sure to do so on the wrong side of your fabric. The pattern photo shows one pocket on the bodice and one on the skirt. I decided to omit the bodice pocket and do two pockets on the skirt instead.
- Stay stitch the neckline edges of your front and back bodice pieces 1/4" away from the edge.
- Finish the side seams of your bodice and skirt pieces using a zig zag stitch or a serger. Finish the shoulder seams of your bodice pieces, facing pieces, and the sleeve underarm edges as well.
- With right sides together, sew your bodice pieces together at the shoulder seams. Press seam open. *All seam allowances on this pattern are 5/8" unless noted otherwise.
- Sew your facing pieces together at the shoulder seams. Press seam open. Finish the bottom edge.
- Pin your facing to the neckline of your bodice and stitch.
- Grade and clip your seam. Press seam towards facing.
- Top stitch your facing down 1/4" away from the seam. Press facing down flat.
- Sew your bodice together at the side seams and the center back. For the center back, make sure to stop at the notch and backstitch. This opening is to make it easier for your head to get through your dress. Press all seams open.
- Top stitch either side of the opening at the center back.
- Pin down your facing pieces along the center back and slip-stitch closed.
- Since I was low on matching thread for this fabric, I decided to embrace the shortage and use a contrasting thread and a decorative stitch to sew down the neckline facing and any hems. Test out some decorative stitches on a scrap piece of fabric before you sew the real thing. My machine doesn't have much in the way of decorative stitches so I settled on a simple triangle design. Pin down your facing piece with the right side of your dress facing you and stitch down, using the guidelines on your sewing machine to sew an even line. Hand sew your hook and bar closure at the top of your center back opening.
- Sew your sleeves together at the underarm seam. Press seam open.
- Stitch two gathering stitches (longest stitch length possible on your sewing machine) along the sleeve cap 1/4" and 1/2" away from the edge.
- Pin your sleeve into the armholes of your bodice, easing the sleeve cap in by lightly pulling on your gathering stitches from Step 10. Stitch in place, making sure to set your machine back to normal from the gathering stitch length. Finish your armhole seam with a zig zag stitch or serger.
- Try on your bodice to check the length of your sleeves. If you are happy with the length, continue on by finishing the bottom edge of your sleeve. Press up 1". With the top side facing you, use your decorative stitch setting to sew your hem in place.
- Finish all edges of your pocket pieces then pin the top right side edges down 1" along the sides. Stitch in place and then clip the corners.
- Flip the top edge over to the back and press in place. Press down the sides and bottoms as well.
- Using your decorative stitch, hem down the top edges of your pockets.
- Place pins in your pocket placement markings on your front skirt piece and flip over to the right side. Match the corners of your pockets to these markings and pin down along the sides and bottom edges. Remove pins from the wrong side and top stitch pockets down 1/8" from the edge.
- Sew your skirt pieces together at the side seams. Press seams open.
- Going back to the longest stitch setting, place gathering stitches 1/4" and 1/2" from the top edge of your skirt.
- Match your bodice side seams to your skirt side seams and pin in place. Match center front and center back of bodice to center front and center back of skirt and pin in place. Lightly gather the rest of your skirt to your bodice and pin all around. Stitch. Finish seam with zig zag stitch or serger and press seam upwards towards bodice.
- Try on your dress to check that the length is to your liking. If so, finish the bottom edge of your skirt and then press up 1". Finish your dress by pinning the hem in place with the right side up and use your decorative stitch setting to sew your hem in place. Remove any visible gathering stitches from the right side of your dress.
- Time to wear your beautiful new pink dress! See you on Wednesdays!