Monday, July 12, 2010

Dress Sewing

Several of you have asked about the dress patterns for our 'Let Freedom Sing!" costumes. Yes, we did sew them. But unfortunately for eager 'pattern seekers', we're notorious for not using patterns! We usually decide what we're going for, look to see if we have any patterns with similar features, and start playing with the fabric. For all you seamstresses out there, here are a few quick tips to 'custom-make' your clothes:
  • Have a good idea what 'look' you're going for. Find patterns [on hand or at thrift stores] with those features. Often we'll choose a skirt from one pattern, and sleeve from another, and a neckline from yet a third!
  • Know your measurements.
  • Make a 'mock bodice' before cutting in the real fabric. We have a wonderful supply of free, white fabric from used hotel sheets we use for this. Once we have all the quirks worked out with the hotel fabric, we cut the dress using this perfected 'pattern'.
  • Keep it simple. We didn't start by making a complete dress pattern from scratch. We simply modified the sleeves on a dress, blending two patterns. And our exploration went from there! And we're still learning!
  • Notice which features you like from others' home-sewn wardrobes. Full skirts? cap sleeves? top stitching details?
Please note: We still highly recommend sewing from patterns! Especially if you're a beginning seamstress. But for those of you who like to experiment with fabric, we hope you find these tips helpful!

We're still looking forward to sharing a 'skirt-making' series with you this summer. Thanks for your patience and stay tuned!

"She makes linen garments and sells them,
And supplies sashes for the merchants.
Strength and honor are her clothing;
She shall rejoice in time to come"
Prov 31:24-25


nicole said...

you clever bunch!

Jenna said...

That just made the dresses all the more beautiful - I love them! You all did a lovely job designing them.

Your post inspired me to keep sewing and start experimenting a bit more:)

Looking forward to your skirt-making series,


~Desiree~ said...

I love to sew I am sure these will help! I look forward to the skirt making series!

Charity U said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Charity U said...

1. I only removed that other post because I left an 'o' out of 'look' which appeared terrible.
2. Here's my comment over again. I love those dresses! They look so fun to walk in!

Anna B. said...

You are amazing...have a ever told you that before?!?! I was admiring our dresses again and am amazed by your creativity ( love white on the bottom of your skirt).

You even made me want to not use a pattern...and that is quite an accomplishment *smile* lol!
<3 you!

Erin said...

Thanks so much for sharing! Looking forward to the series.

Kas said...

I'm glad to know there are others out there who "blend" patterns together. :-) The dresses turned out beautifully! Fantastic job!

Kasie said...

I'm glad to know there are others out there who "blend" patterns together. :-) The dresses turned out beautifully! Fantastic job!

JoyfulJewels4Jesus said...

Thanks for sharing your tips for sewing, ladies! I am looking forward to your summer sewing series very, very much!!

You did a wonderful job designing and sewing all of the dresses. I like patterns with the instructions, but often my mom and I are looking for ways to make them simpler! :)

Joyfully in Jesus,

amy said...

The dresses are beautiful, and it's amazing that you all made them yourselves! I wish I could sew like that! I've only combined patterns once before...I found it sort of difficult, but I did have fun doing it. :)

You know, I always enjoy reading your blog. It would be *so* delightful to meet you sometime!!! Would you happen to be coming to the Kansas City area sometime?

In Christ,

Anonymous said...

Yippee! I can't wait! :)

Hannah said...

How do you manage to get old hotel sheets? I love to sew and often have to make mock-ups. :)
Your dresses are lovely! I especially like the red one!

Haughstuff said...

The dresses are lovely. How do you get the bottoms so full? I'm guessing a crinoline?

The Morris Family said...

Hi Rachael!!!!

Enjoy looking at your blog as well.....what a beautiful ministry your family has! If your ever in Oklahoma City we would love to meet up with you all and visit!!

Cindy Morris

Hannah Shields said...

I love the dresses!!
Only I don't want to sew myself one as much as I would just love for it to be sent already made to my front door!!! LOL:)
Great job ladies!!

Sisters of Grace said...

Thanks for sharing!

I am looking forward to the skirt making series!


Addie said...

I look forward to the sewing lessons!
My grandma is our seamstress.. but unfortunately those talents did not pass down to me!