The Making of a Dress

Insights into the making of a dress crafting with silk chiffons, crepe de chine and applying couture sewing techniques. What reference book to use to achieve the best results in couture sewing. And, who originated couture pleating? The making of dress by hand pleating bias chiffon Working with a quality chiffon is a good start in hand crafting bias pleats. This technique requires "patiences of an angel" with an awareness of feel in your finger tips. Constructing narrow pleats by delicately folding fabric on to itself, equal width and depth, clean edge, slowly shaping around the bodice pinning in place to hold. Once you start, the process becomes almost meditative as you keep your eye on the marked bias grain. In this attempt in hand pleating, I made a few mistakes. For example, like running out of chiffon and secretly adding more so I could finish the pleated panel. Finally, after being satisfied with the pleated panel and cutting the shape the next step is to wax silk thread to hand sew in between the pleats. This is where your hand sewing skills take centre stage but are hidden in between the pleats. Construction of the dress using couture sewing techniques The dress comprises stylistic and decorative elements using draping, pattern-making and couture sewing techniques. The bodice structure (corselette) includes: boning, three layers of textiles featuring one asymmetric panel of chiffon pleating and the other shaped darts in crepe de chine. The bias skirt made with crepe de chine adding extra wide seams for weight, lined in silk. There were many challenges, one being sewing the skirt side seams and applying the zipper by hand. When constructing the dress, I use many temporary stitches throughout [...]