March 08, 2013

Christening Gown pt. 2

I finished the gown a few weeks ago but have been busy with other projects; Chinese New Year, Valentine and DD2 second birthday. The gown came out very well for being my first heirloom project and would recommend this pattern (Natalie in Sew Beautiful issue 135 March/April 2011) to anyone else looking for a beginner project.

There was no lace insertion but strips of lace were sewn together to create a wide lace border at the bottom of the skirt. I used this website for tips and hints on how to do this.

I didn't have an edger foot for my machine and so I tried my blindstitch foot. It worked ok but in the end found I had better or more control with my regular foot. Decreasing upper thread tension is a must otherwise the lace will become puckery. The hardest row was the last one which was sewing a gathered lace edge to entredeux. I gathered the lace by pulling one of top header threads in the lace. I had to sew really slow and adjust the gathers as I went with a straight pin. The presser foot wanted to keep pulling out the gathers but it worked out in the end just lots of patience.

One change I made to the construction was finishing the edge of the dupioni skirt before adding the lace band. According to heirloom sewing, the lace would be attached using a narrow zigzag roll described here as flat lace to flat fabric technique. This method rolls the fabric very narrowly while attaching the lace. I have worked with dupioni and feared the unraveling would cause some problems with this, at least to my inexperience heirloom sewing skills. I instead opted to serge the bottom edge first and then overlap the top lace edge over the serger stitching with a narrow zigzag. I don't think anyone will notice.

Here is the end result, enjoy.

Update: Baby was blessed this last Sunday, June 2, 2013

Maria in her dress

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