Thursday, June 11, 2009

Rick Rack, Frick Frack

I will start with my second version of this dress, as it was my first rick-rack installation. (So we can get the frustrations out of the way---because I adore this pattern).

I had to sew the trim into the seam three times before it looked decent. It was either not showing enough, or showing way too much...sigh. I almost gave up, but the third time worked like a charm.....well.......good enough to be charming, anyway. Any advice would be muchly appreciated....I thought I'd centered the rick-rack on the seam line, but that was not the case. Tips?

Oh my. That center photo needs pressing! Oops. :)
This is a pattern dream come true, because I hate set-in sleeves. Okay...maybe I am not done venting, :) But I find them tedious. I need to set a day aside where I sew about ten set-in sleeves in a row until I get the hang of it and am no longer afraid.

That's what I did with buttons and buttonholes......Once upon a time, I just threw them on there without measuring all willy nilly, but realized later that it looks really, really super bad to do it that way....especially if you use brightly colored buttons :) So I sat down one afternoon and worked on nothing but button placement and holes. Yeehaw.

Sewing is a good meditation and challenge for me. It works BOTH sides of the brain, which is good since I am soooo right-brain dominant I can hardly finish a sentence without swirling into a totally different...hey! Cookies are good.

I discovered Butterick 7373 when reading an old Dressaday post. And another copy just happened to be on ebay in my size at that very I snagged it. I have made these two versions and plan on making a couple more.

It goes together relatively quickly. I no longer finish the bodice and then add the skirt seperately, if the skirt and bodice have matching side seams. I make the front of the dress, then the back, and then sew them together---much easier than trying to attach a finished skirt later...especially when there is a side lapped zipper to install.

Did I mention I am no longer afraid of those either?


Anonymous said...

So cute. I love the little cap sleeve that doesn't need setting. I feel your pain with ric rac--I am posting a dress today/morrow with piping...same frustration, but looks adorable!

Anonymous said...

Their lovely ,you are very gifted

Poke Salad Annie said...

these are amazing! can you come to toronto and teach me to sew please? :)

toodles said...

What a fabulous go anywhere dress! The rick rack is an awesome touch.

Catholic Bibliophagist said...

Soooo cute! I would never have thought of using rick rack on this dress, but it really works.

What sort of fabric did you make these out of?

Miss Amelina said...

Quilter's cotton....both were 75% off or something each dress cost about eleven bucks to make.

Paulette said...

LUV the blue version...such a beautiful color in the batik....I hope you model both versions.

Latter-Day Flapper said...

Okay, this doesn't work in all cases, but the last dress I made with rick-rack trim, I ironed along the seam lines, basted all the rick-rack in ahead of time with the seam line folded over, and then topstitched the second piece of fabric on.

So, for a collar--fold over and iron all edges. Then, line up your rick-rack and baste THROUGH THE FOLD, so that if you flip the piece over and look at the "right" side of the fabric, you can see you rick-rack peeking out as it's supposed to look in the finished piece. Fold over the edges of the other piece of the collar. Line them up and topstitch together.

I have no advice if you don't want visible topstitching, but that method, while it took longer because of all that basting, worked the first time around and occasioned no ripping-out and re-sewing.

Here's the dress. Note rick-rack along neckline and yoke. Marian Martin 9359 (posted to Sew Retro). You can't tell here, but it lined up perfectly, and I've never done rick-rack before.