Flower Girl Dress, Part 6: Bodice Assembly

Finally the satin bodice front was dry and I was able to continue work. I started by pressing everything and then connecting the shoulders.

Then I stay-stitched around the neck and arm holes of the satin bodice only. I thought about doing it to the lining too, but it seemed a bit overkill. The stay-stitching also did double-duty holding the pressed open seams flat around the edges, so that they were more likely to stay in place when I was connecting bodice to lining later.

Next I pinned the two bodices together and stitched ス" from the edges on neck and arm-holes. After pressing, I trimmed the seams down to シ". This was easy to do because my stay-stitching had been シ" in from the edge, so I was able to use the stitching as a guide. And then of course a few notches cut into the curved portions.

Then the moment of truth! Reaching inside the front, up through the straps to pull the back portions through and turn the whole thing inside out.

The satin being so nice and slippery, this was easy to do.

Pressing it flat was less easy! But I managed, and was happy to note the curves looked very nice and wrinkle-free.

Among all the books I got from the library, only one had gone against the grain and recommended シ" seams for armholes and neckholes, pointing out that fewer clips would be necessary with a narrow seam and that as low-stress seams, those seams really did not need to be as wide as they are in most patterns. I did make them ス" on the pattern so that I could trim them together and make them perfectly even, but I was very happy with the look of the シ" seams.

Finally I opened up the sides and sewed those together, this time with a ス seam for strength (and a little wiggle-room to let out the dress by an inch if I really need to).

On several of my trials, I tried under-stitching the bodice lining around the neck before sewing around the arm-holes, and/or the armholes after having turned the bodice inside out. I like the idea of understitching, but somehow it seemed I was always causing myself more problems trying to do it for a questionable amount of benefit. And I didn't like not being able to do it all the way around the entire seam. So for the final version, I skipped it. I think for a regular facing I would do it, but for a fully-lined bodice it just didn't seem worth it. If I don't like how the seam edges are rolling later on I may go back and do it by hand, which would be easier though it wouldn't look quite as nice.

Completed bodice, ready for skirt attachment:

Continue: Part 7, Skirt Set-Back.

- Victoria, 2012-04-21

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