Saturday, July 17, 2010

Working hard for a BAD GIRL

I took a commission for a bad girl dress from No More Heroes and took a lot of progress shots I thought it make a good blog. Plus I want ya to know just how much work I put into it. So much in fact that its my newest pride and joy and it's not even a costume for myself. =p

I went with cotton blend fabrics, and they all have a nice stretch to it. I'm happy with the fabric choice I made except maybe the sateen red, it was too stretchy and didn't press too well when making the bais tape out of it, but I really liked the color red so I went with it. I won't use sateen again for this though.

I take my progress shots with my phone because it's easy to upload to photobucket to share with customers. Some might be blury, and small as I resized them for this blog.

Alright so lets get started.
I took some time looking through my patterns (which I have boxes of) to find a good base dress pattern. After I found one I thought would work I started cutting.


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I did the easiest thing first. BOW <3>
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Which I made a lil' oversized, but It adds it's own personality (My own) to the costume.
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The commission didn't include a necklace choker, but I thought that was easy enough to make and I'm awesome so I made one.
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Then came the tedious part.
Making my own Bias tape, because coming across the right pink and red striped fabric is like finding a needle in a haystack and I knew I wouldn't find it. Although I did check several stores, thought I might get lucky. Either way, I don't think it would of been as purfect as it ended up being had I not sewn each individual red stripe on one by one.
Bias tape though gets expensive, retails for about 1.99$ for 3 yrds. I'd need at least 25 yrds... that's $50 for some bias tape. Where a yrd of fabric is about $8. So I just made my own and
With my Bias Tape Maker Investment it wasn't too bad. I tested it out.

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and it was a success!

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And so then I layed out the lines for cutting the rest the fabric.

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Cutting, cutting. My hand was sore as I decided to cut the lines with pinking sheers. Not so easy on the hands, at least not mine, and I had prepped a bunch of other projects by cutting them all out just the day before. So my hands were numb.

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So after a good while I had all my stripes cut out and pressed and ready to start pinning and sewing. This was even more tedious than the cutting and pressing... well I guess there wasn't one part of this dress that wasn't 'easy' ... except the bow. ^_^

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I played around with a few spacing options and in the end decided that spacing them closer together at the top and further apart on the bottom was the most appealing.


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Then I had to make sure I spaced them out the same on each panel. There are two front panels and two back panels. (at this time) Once I pinned one to what I felt was purfect enough making sure that the lines were evenly spaced, I then turned it wrong side up and placed the second panel on top to get a good guide to where the lines should be and how far apart they should be on the second panel. I measured it as best I could. Once I had that finished it was time to start sewing. yay!

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Finally I got a base dress with pink and red stripes. I pinned the boning to the dress to guage how it would look flared out.

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After taking a look at it I realized that the flare of the base pattern wasn't as wide as I thought it would be and it just didn't look right. So I added two small side panels.

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More cutting, more bias tape making, more pressing, more sewing and then finally it got the look I was going for.

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Now the fabrics are a little light so it needed to be lined.
Here I've got the pinned boning to show the flare, much better.
I originally used plastic boning as that is all that I could find locally, and we were going the cheapest route possible (for the customer). This however did now work, as the plastic boning was just too whimpy. I mean it worked, but the hoop of the skirt would cave in the front and in the back making it flare to the sides, which gave it a flare that wasn't so "accurate".
So I again am awesome I cut my losses on this and just added metal hoop skirt boning.

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Preping the lining...
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Sewing the casing for the boning to the lining.

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After a few fails at sewing the lining in place, I finally got to doing the Ruffles. Oh joy.
Here I am preping the ruffles by making a roll hem.

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Rolled hem...



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STll more preping of the ruffles with the hem line.

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Me still heming...

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Finally we get to the pleating. This took... a very long time.

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Then sewing the pleats...

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Pinning to see how it looks, and mainly to send progress pictures to customer.

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Also deciding if the ruffle should go all the way around. Customer decided to just have it on the front for the top of the dress.

(STill plastic boning in these pictures - so I think you can tell how funky the "flare" is. It's not quite like a hoop skirt)

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I took some liberties on the sleeves. They aren't really accurate. I started making them without looking at the reference only to realize that I was off. HOwever it's still great, and again it adds personality (mine) to the dress. =p
Customer was ok with it. =]
Hurray for not having to redo it, because it was a pain to sew on, and also deadline was quickly approaching. (RUSH RUSH)

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Finally it's all done, and I absolutley love it. I put alot of work into it and I think it shows.

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Originally I wasn't going to do the eyelet close off in the back because I didn't catch that in the reference pictures and the customer didn't mention it.
However I have a repeat customer who is also commissioning this dress and mentioned it to me and I'm just so awesome, I added that little detail as well. =p I made little crochet rings for the tie ends. hehe. I love it.
I try to be as accurate as possible but I don't always catch things from ref pics. So it's just important you mention the details of your commission.
Otherwize too bad so sad.
I don't always add extra details aside from what was originally stated without charging extra, but in this case I was really nice. ^_~
Even included a necklace, which I forgot to put in the pictures above.

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I'm hoping for some customer pictures. <3>

I'm also excited to start on the second BAd Girl dress commission.
But first I gota finish some other projects.
I really loved making this and will be listing it on Etsy (after I finish the second dress - to have variation) as a commission that I"m always willing to take. I made this in 3 weeks, but I'd like at least 6 weeks for the making, and it'll retail for (a sm/med) $285 + shipping.

Neither of my commissions for this paid nearly this much, but now I know my worth and thats the price I'll work for. =]
^_~

Thanks for reading.

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