Thursday, November 10, 2011

Finale: Ballgown!

Here's photos of the last weeks process in this Ballgown process. (In sequence)
Beginning of week: Goal 1: FINISH HOOP SKIRT!

I cut out my hoop skirt out of the final fabric, installed the steel boning and the bias cut velvet strips that held them.

Cutting Bias strips of velvet for hoop skirt boning channels.
sewing 70ish yards of boning channels...ahh..those terribly frustrating memories!
My french seams on bias silk organza seam allowances....BLERGH! Probably the other hardship of this sewing project.
sewing the strips onto the organza was by far the biggest challenge for me. It took a solid two days of coffee and breaks of working on other things.
the velvet boning channels. Keeping this outer shell/nebulous shape is really hard! I wanted to put vertical boning in the princess seams of the hoop skirt (to secure it), but realized I couldn't sit down if so! DUH.
all put together!
Hoop skirt with bows tacked on. I think they really tied the finished cape and whole outfit together. Plus, why the heck not with more "Chanel style" silk velvet bows. pah-shah!
I tacked these bows on at the very last minute (up until midnight of the last 30th day!) That note is telling Terry (the teacher of the class) when I finished.
The Hoop skirt gave me more trouble than I had anticipated so now I had to bang out the last part of my dress, which fulfilled the "sleeve and trail requirement" of the victorian style project. I only had a few days to do it, but was confident in my ruching, hand tacking, and massive bow making skills.

Here's the muslin and first draft of the sleeve. It was ok, but I wanted it to be more of a rounder shape, not that of a hot dog. One more pattern correction, and muslin later, done.
Here's the muslin of the ruching on the back. Ive practiced this experimental draping technique before on other dresses, so I was familiar with it. Even so, I still took it down a notch a little bit in the real fabric. I draped this first too see 'abouts' how much fabric I needed for it.
Now, it was time to jam this thing out.

Pre-pressed sleeve. with an actual bicep it stands up a bit more and creates a rounder shape.
Ruched back, tacked down to a self lined coutil backing and arm bands. There's obviously a lot of organza around it!
I made the trail out of the same silk velvet. It is so luxurious to touch all the time! But I now know that it absolutely is heinous to sew and press with. I will make lots of silk velvet/crushed velvet outfits when I have seamstresses.
The trail was about 6 feet from natural waist to floor. And dang was it heavy! (A design flaw I now realize...)
Up until the last moments I did pretty relaxing sewing stuff such as sewing the silk bias binding on my under dress. It turned out looking pretty sharp!
The following weekend I had my ballgown showing at my school, October 15th, Saturday. Heres some photos of the event taken by my boyfriend Adam, my parents, and the fabulous Bret Doss. (You'll DEFINITELY be able to tell the professionals ;)

I presented with a fellow schoolmate, Kathy Sabah-Mensah. She is just absolutely divine! She finished her ballgown around the same time I did. Also, it is completely different than mine!

This guy is Dr. Robert Whaley. He is the provost of the school and judges these things. He passed us both. Thank GAWD! And really, what I learned from this is that no project really ever comes out the way you thought it would, no matter how many hours you put into it. Mine, total, took about 250-300 hours to do this. But now, I have some super awesome skills and patterns.

Thanks to everyone who helped, fed, made me laugh when I was stressin' tough, listened to me geek out about making bra cups, etc. ! You really saved me. Now, here's more pictures.

I had a lot of fun with my styling as you can tell.

mid make up
taking the hoop skirt off, with Terry Horlamus
Doing make up
On the dressform.
I think I just heard that I passed, but was still kinda confused about it!

All three parts of dress on.
Gorgeous Kathy!

A professional photo shoot to come soon! This really sparked my creative bug. I'm ready to make more amazing clothes these cold winter months!

Ciao for now!

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