Tutorial | Wrap Dress

July 17, 2017

It feels SO GOOD to be writing a tutorial again! It has been way too long, but with my graphic design class wrapping up (this is my last week!) I feel like I can finally give my blog and my readers (you!) the TLC that it needs!

I've absolutely loved taking the online graphic design course via BYU-Idaho and learning about the elements of design that make up a beautiful work of art and I have LOVED getting to know Adobe Illustrator. Hopefully I'll be able to use it effectively to teach/show you how to make the dress I made  for yourself!

You'll need:
About *3 yards of fabric (stretchy fabric is best)
Measuring tape
Matching thread
Loose fitting V-neck (for reference/pattern making)

*this may vary depending on the length of the circle skirt you're making, your waist measurement, and your pattern placement skills.

You'll need to cut one bodice piece, two flutter sleeves, a tie, a circle skirt, and TWO bodice front pieces. Use a loose-fitting v-neck shirt that you like to create the pattern for the bodice, then draw a line that extends from the point of the v-neck to about 4 or five inches below your armpit. To calculate the opening of the circle skirt, determine the circumference of the bodice opening, then use the formula for Circumference (C=2πr or C=πd). Measure about a half inch in from that measurement (for seam allowance) and cut the opening of the circle skirt. Measure from the opening of the skirt out to the length you want your skirt (Mine was about 18" long).

Step 1: Hem the top of the bodice front pieces (the swooping neckline parts) and the neckline of the bodice back piece, then lay your bodice front pieces one on top of the other, right side to wrong side, aligning the edges. Use a straight stitch to sew the two pieces together as indicated above. You won't need to use a zig zag (or lightning) stitch if you're using stretchy fabric unless you want to.

Step 2: Sew the shoulder seams of the bodice front and bodice back together (right-sides together) with a straight stitch.

Step 3: Lay the bodice pieces out flat (as indicated) then find the center of the sleeve and begin pinning the sleeve around the arm hole with right sides together. I'll be adding a how-to flutter sleeve tutorial in the very near future!

Step 4: Use a straight stitch to sew around the arm hole with the sleeve attached.

Step 5: Turn the entire bodice so that it's inside-out. Pin the sleeves and sides together then use a straight stitch to sew as indicated. Turn the bodice right-side out.

Step 6: Slide the bodice inside the circle skirt portion (remember, C=2πr or C=πd) with right sides together and pin. Sew the bodice to the skirt with a straight stitch. Hem the skirt and the sleeves.

Step 7: Fold the tie in half, hot-dog style with right sides together, pin, then use a straight stitch to sew along the long edge. Turn it right-side-out, fold the raw edges inside each end, pin, then sew with a straight stitch. My tie dimensions were about 2.5x84" because I used fabric from around the circle skirt when I realized I cut it too long. Just make it long enough to go around your waist once (or twice) then tie with a little leftover to hang down.

I wore this dress yesterday and it is definitely a good one for summer! Those flutter sleeves and the circle skirt provide the perfect amount of airiness that's perfect for this time of year. Watch out for strong winds, though because this baby would *whooosh!!!* ;)

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts! Have you ever had a "skirt and stiff breeze" experience? I promised in my Instagram account that I'd share mine. It's not exactly a "stiff breeze" but entertaining nonetheless!

Imagine your 7th grade self getting up the courage to wear a skirt to school one day. You put on your most confident smile as you walk from class to class while everyone is watching you walk by and wondering why you look like you just came from church. And then, you see that patch of ice, right at that corner of the sidewalk that everyone just walks over. You know, the one with the dead grass because nobody follows the sidewalk at a right angle.

Anyway, you see the patch of ice and the idea flashes through your mind that maybe you shouldn't walk on it, but you're wearing your confident smile today, plus, there's a whole hoard of fellow pimple-ridden Sevies behind you and beside you that there's really no way of avoiding it. So you chance it...

Your foot hits the ice, right at that sweet spot. Pens, pencils, and books with their doodled-all-over book covers go flying in the air as you land flat on your back, your skirt up by your ears.

Confident. Smile. Gone.

Haha! Fortunately, there weren't actually that many people around and I was able to get up rather quickly, but I learned a very valuable lesson that day: Do not wear skirts to school when there's ice on the premises!

Head over to my Instagram if you have a funny story like this to share, or comment below!


Susan is a birth photographer/videographer serving Chandler, Arizona and surrounding cities. Considering a photographer for your birth? Contact Susan for EDD availability.

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