Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Get Your Motors Running....The Cool Down and a Guest Post

Good Morning Everyone and a big thank you for participating in the Get Your Motors Running Challenge. Yes, there was voting and there is only one prize to pass out, but I really hate to call it a contest. It was a challenge, a challenge to take a rather small piece of fabric and come up with something not only wearable, but interesting. The nine who completed the project all went far and above the challenge. All of the garments were beautiful, well executed, and a good use of the panel fabric.
But as I said, there was only one prize to pass out and it goes to the lovely Miss Cennetta of The Mahogany Stylis!!!!!! Congratulations Cennetta :).
As you know, Cennetta will be receiving the Islander Pattern, Motor City Express Jacket and the accompanying Craftsy class. I'm sure Cennetta will use both to create an incredible jacket!

Now for a little surprise!
I was especially intrigued with the design that Debbie of Lily Sage and Company did, so I asked her to do a guest post for us and let us in on her design and drafting process. 
Enjoy the post!

It's been asked of me to explain how I went about designing this dress, so I will do my best to describe my methods. I'm self-taught when it comes to sewing and design, so I am aware that some of my methods may be unconventional, but they seem to work for me (most of the time!).
I actually started with a pattern that I had made more than a year ago. The pattern was for this drop waist dress. I've made several dresses using this pattern, including some long sleeve variations, which you can easily find on my blog. My love of the drop waist is a poorly kept secret.

I created the original drop waist dress pattern by draping, with the help of a favorite text book. I only have some very basic draping skills, but I do find it to be the best way for me to achieve a good bodice fit, as well as get my head around unusual  or new-to-me designs.

So my starting point was a drop waist dress with long French darts and a front zipper (in those days I was breastfeeding on the hour!). This is how the flat pattern pieces of the bodice looked.

My first step was to redraft the side seam to incorporate a triangular side panel. To do this, I lined up the side seams with each other,and drew in new lines where I wanted the side panel seams to go. Here, I've pinned together the front and back bodice pieces.

Now you can see where I re-drew my side seams to make the panel. The overlay is the side panel piece from my Challenge dress. The purple line is the where the original side seam would be.

I also had to consider the dart size at this point. By adding the side panel, I was also reducing the size of the dart. I wasn't too bothered by this because my bust is a little smaller (without the breastfeeding!) since I'd made the original pattern. However, I still found the dress a little snug across the chest (not bust volume) after my first muslin, so I ended up adding a tiny bit of extra width to the front side seam.

This is what the final pattern pieces of the challenge dress (bodice) looked like. The back piece, to the left, also shows the extra wedge that I added to the back to increase the A-line shape of the dress. My original muslin didn't include this and I found that the dress looked to "flat" at the back.

In the picture below, my drop waist dress pattern is overlaying my Challenge dress pieces so you can see how I extended the length and modified the shape of the bottom.

When I finally had the bodice shape right, I went about drafting the flounce. I measured and traced the contour of the bottom of all the bodice pieces and drew up a skirt that extended along the natural A-line shape of the dress. To turn the skirt into a flounce, I slashed it in 2-3 places to give it a slight flare. There's a great tutorial (http://ozzyblackbeard.blogspot.com/2014/11/self-drafted-flounce-skirt.htmlhere, on how to create a flounce for a skirt.

The organza panel is simply a part of the skirt. I drew up that panel after I was happy with the skirt shape.

Hopefully, this explanation gives you a better insight into how I came up with my design. I, for one, always find it interesting how the flat pattern pieces look compared with the finished 3D garment.

Thanks Debbie!!!!
Debbie's design would translate beautifully to a color blocked garment. You could also use a lace where she used the sheer organza, so lots of possibilities. 
Now, go get your motors running!!!!
Happy Sewing Everyone!
Be sure to come back by tomorrow as I have another super duper surprise in store for you ;) Hint, hint, it includes a pattern!!!!! 

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  1. Congratulations Cennetta. And thanks Debbie and Rhonda for sharing the drafting process. Fun challenge.

  2. Congrats Cennetta, and all the other participants who did a truly amazing job! Thanks Rhonda for hosting this article! Debbie did a fantastic job both on the dress and explaining her process; I enjoyed every single bit!!

  3. Congrat to you Cennetta! Thanks for sharing this great information.

  4. Felicicades Cennetta !! Your dress is really impressive and well-deserved award, I love that dress !! And thank you, dear Rhonda for allowing all these wonderful ladies I did not know before. This challenge was so funny !!

  5. Thank you all. I am proud to be in the company of such talented, skilled women. Thanks Rhonda and Debbie for sharing the pattern drafting information.

  6. Congratulations Cennetta. All the participants did an excellent job. It was hard to pick just one.
    Thanks Debie for sharing your pattern process.

  7. Such gorgeous dresses!!! Congratulations Cennetta and Thank You Debbie for including your detailed creation process, I love your style. ;)

  8. Congratualtions, Cenetta! Wonderful effort and well deserved.

    Thanks Rhonda and Debbie for sharing your drafting process. Great look that looks so nice on you.

  9. This has been a fantastic post. Well done to Cenetta, my second choice, and thanks for the tutorial for what was my first choice! Truly, all of the garments were wonderful and you were very generous passing on that lovely fabric Rhonda.