The challenge pattern
After making the relevant adjustments to fit my ample bosom I pondered the lace insertion techniques. I have never done this before so tackled the shorter shoulder ones first. These went well. I pinned the lace to marks on the fabric sewed down each side- turned the fabric over then slit the fabric between the tramline of stitching and then rolled back and finished the seams. There is not a lot of fabric so in hindsight I may have used a Zig zag stitch just to anchor the seam. Here are the pictures
Seams. The middle long insertion- I marked on the fabric where the top of the lace should finish and did the same approach just clipping the seam at the top so that it would press flat. On the “side” seam I sewed the seam to the top of the placement then tacked the rest of the seam so that the seam would reopen easier after the lace had been applied. I tried 2 finishing techniques. On one seam I pressed the seam open then applied the lace- it allowed for a nice fold over of fabric to finish the seam as the edges were automatically enclosed. I also tried on the other one pushing the seam fabric to one side as I sewed down the edge of the lace so that it wasn’t caught in the stitching – and then the opposite way when sewing down the other side. I then folded the finished edges under to create a seam when finished – both ways worked well.
I made a mistake on the top layer of lace access the bodice by applying it to each piece individually- DON’T ist really hard to match up the seams do it after construction. The second strip I did after construction and it worked really well. I sewed all the other seams together as normal.
The insertion lace and the edging lace went together really well and I used large bobbin needle to thread the ribbon through
The back I finished the edges and machine stitched buttonholes
For the hem I was running out of lace so it wasn’t as full as I would have liked. I marked the halfway point on the flounce with tailors chalk then applied the lace along the line doing the insertion as before. Its very time consuming as each seam is sewn essentially four times.
I hand pleated and applied to the hem of the slip. I’m afraid I cheated a little and used a selvedge edge (shock horror) in order to minimise bulk. I then applied a layer of lace to finish off the join- this was just applied to the seam join and not inserted due to the many layers of the pleat etc.
The while thing took about 6 hours from start to finish. It’s made in cream cotton (curtain lining its cheap and plentiful) and a creamy coloured lace (it looks peach on the picture) again this was cheap and off my local market I bought four 3 metre bundles for 60 pence each.
The ribbon beading was 50 pence a metre and the ribbon the same
I wanted to keep the costs down as it’s only a run through.
In the end it’s wearable muslin that could be used for the stage and I’m really pleased I learned some new techniques