DAY 1 | STAY, DARTS, GATHER AND POCKET
written by Joanne Yusuf
Hello and welcome to the first day of the ballet top + dress DELPY Sew Along! You will already have cut out your pattern pieces, transferred all markings and notches onto the fabric. Please read the instructions thoroughly before cutting and note a 1.5 cm (⅝”) seam allowance is included in the pattern.
In this sew along we will be covering the steps for View A Scoop Back Ballet Dress Delpy. I will be referring to bodice/dress throughout the sew along- for those of you choosing to sew the top version referring to bodice and the dress version referring to dress. Today we will be covering some basic sewing steps to get started on our garment construction. I am so excited to share with you and hope you find the images helpful.
Tools you will need for this project:
- fabric, washed and cut out with all markings and notches transferred- Please refer to the instructions of your pattern found here for fabric suggestions, sizing and layout.
- coordinating thread
- scissors/rotary cutter
- marking tools such as clover chalk or fabric pen
- sewing ruler for cutting
- iron/ ironing board
- Sewing machine
Now that we have all of our tools ready and fabric prepped, lets get sewing!
Step 1. Stay-stitch along the neckline, back,and underarms inside the seam allowance, about 1 cm (⅜”) from the edge. You will cut this off after the garment construction, when you trim the seam allowance.
Step 2. Next we will sew our darts on the front bodice/dress and facing. I like to draw my darts on the wrong side of the fabric and fold together matching the lines.
Press the bodice/dress darts up and the facing darts down.
Step 3. Place the gather. Using a basting/gathering stitch sew two parallel lines along the center of the bodice and the front facing down to the marked dot on your fabric. DO NOT GATHER YET. You will thread the strings on a needle and pull the loose threads to the “wrong” side of the bodice/dress and facing. We will come back to these later.
Set your bodice/dress pieces aside while we create our pocket! If you choose to not add a pocket go ahead and skip this part and move on to DAY two BODICE/DRESS BODY when available and ready.
Step 4. Follow the instructions/tutorial for how to sew a curved hem. You will use a zig-zag stitch (4mm baste length) 0.3 cm (⅛”) from the raw edge. Stitch just before the curve starts to just after it ends, keeping the threads long. Gently pull the thread ends to gather the fabric along the curve, spreading the gather out evenly. The zig-zagged, gathered edge will start to fold the fabric over. Press the edge down flat (toward the “wrong” side of the fabric) .
I chose to overlock the edges of the pocket and fold over only one time after gathering. You may choose to overlock the edges of the pocket or continue to pull thread ends again to gather the folded, pressed edge a bit further. Allow it fold over again (about 1 cm or ⅜”), so that the raw edge and zig-zag stitch is hidden. Press again. Pin and hem or edge-stitch.
Step 5. Finish the above steps creating the curved hem. To finish, fold the top of the pocket toward the wrong side by 0.3 cm (⅛”), press. Fold again by 1 cm (⅜”) (or more for a wider edge as pictured) and press again. Top-stitch two parallel lines.
Step 6. Pin the pocket to the front of the dress on the straight edge side, matching the dots marked on the fabric. Sew along the edge-stitch line of the pocket, sewing the pocket on the dress before garment construction. Use triangles at the top of the pocket at the start and the finish of the stitch for reinforcement.
Congratulations! You have completed the first day of the sew along! We will be back with Day 2 Bodice/Dress Body. See you then!
Joanne Yusuf lives in the Pacific Northwest, she is a self taught sewist and sewing blogger. Joanne is committed to sewing a sustainable wardrobe using second hand and eco friendly textiles whenever possible. She hopes to inspire others to practice simplicity and mindfulness through the art of creating.
@joanna_essentials on Instagram