Thursday, July 31, 2014

Help! I need help with a project

I mentioned in a previous post that I am making  a full length dress for a friend for a wedding. She will be a bridesmaid and has been instructed to wear whatever she wants but it must be "baby blue". Since she was having no luck at all with local retailers and neither of us saw anything appropriate on line  for a 52 year old bridesmaid , albeit a very attractive one, I offered to make her dress.




We will be making McCalls 6612, View B (the pink one) with a flutter sleeve and floor length skirt. The cowl is less pronounced on this view. The fabric is a sky blue (much more flattering color) rayon knit. Since it is a bit thin  and could use some beefing up, it will be lined. I also think the lining will fall a bit more gracefully in the cowl area if it is lined.  I wanted to buy lining in person so I could make sure it didn't "stick" to the fashion knit. I hit my only option, Joanns,  and actually did really well with a "swimsuit lining knit". It didn't stick, had the same stretch factor and we are good to go. Here's my dilemma - do I do this as an underlining, treat both pieces as one or do I do it as a lining, connected only at the neck and armscye?

The dress is floor length, has a slit to the knee on one side, a cowl neckline, and I think flutter sleeves at this point. I am very worried that if I treat it as a single unit, the fabrics will shift and show wrinkles or pull at the seams somehow, although it hasn't done that with my sampling with it. The biggest issue is the slit. The lining is white. I don't want it flipping out when legs are crossed, etc. I am thinking of a blue stretch lace along the lining edges of the slit which I'll cut back, that is if I use a free hanging lining.  What do you think? Any and all suggestions are welcome.

We've been through two muslins and the fit is looking lovely. I have to say the neckline is really really pretty on her and we are both so pleased with that. It was a pisser to get the fit right and adjust the cowl.  So this weekend I will cut apart the muslin and get sewing. I just need some voices of experience with knit linings. The stretch factors and weights are the same.  You all know my knit experience is not deep so thanks for any help offered............Bunny

ETA: I just thought if I do as an underlining I can do a blue lace strip, mitered at the top, all around the slit on the lining. So if  anything peeks out it will be the pretty blue lace. Hmmmm,,,,,, just thinking but hope to hear your thoughts. Thanks,,,,,Bunny


26 comments:

  1. I would underline. A separate lining may show. Have made two knit dresses recently that required "lining" and did underlining with great success.

    I don't post photos or have a blog.

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  2. No advice on the lining however I do want to thank you for your "baby hem" tutorial. It helped me to hem a 3 layer poly chiffon dress last night. Not a sewing task that I do often, the virtual hand holding was a life saver!

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  3. I'd do the separate lining. To be honest, I haven't made a lined knit dress but I do own several and I always think it's amazing how they just glide over the lining and drape so nicely no matter how I move - obviously the slit in the lining would have to be cut well back as you mentioned so that it wasn't visible.
    Actually, now that I think about it, I do have a knit skirt that is underlined - it is in the mending heap because when I move, the lining moves and pulls the skirt in weird ways - I've been meaning to remove the underlining and just wear a normal slip with it but keep putting it in the too-hard-basket.

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  4. Bunny, my daughter had a rtw knit skirt that was underlined, and she loved it. Unfortunately, the lining shrank and the fashion fabric did not, ending up in a twisted mess. I sew a lot of knits, and typically opt for a slip if another layer is needed. I love and highly recommend the stretch lining that Emma One Sock sells - I've made slips using this fabric, and they are so nice to wear. Fabrics glide over this lining! Anyway, have you considered lining the dress to just above the slit and tacking the lining as you would a normal lining to the side seams? Perhaps your fabric is too thin for that? Food for thought. Good luck!

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    1. Hadn't thought of that. Thanks for the idea and I will give it some thought.

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    2. I also recommend the EOS knit lining. It's very light but completely opaque, incredibly stretchy, and does not run or fray. Really it's made of magic as far as I can tell.

      I did free hanging lining with a skirt with a slit last fall. I finished the lining with lace at the slit, as you mentioned. I also sewed the lining lace to the slit by hand after it peeked out the first time I wore it. HOWEVER, this was not a knitskirt. So, I don't know how differently it might behave. Good luck!

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  5. I've used that exact same swimsuit lining on a few knit dresses. I've sewn them in as "free floating" (attached at neck and armholes). For the one slit I dealt with, I made the slit facings wider, then cut out the lining around the facing and hand stitched all the way around - just as one would for a slit or vent in a skirt. Oh - prior to dealing with the slit, I let the dress hang for a few days, to "acclimatize" the two fabrics. So far - behaving well. The dresses are a dream to wear with that lining.

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  6. Personally I would do a lining. However I would not line the cowl but instead cut something along the lines of a tank neckline. That way the cowl will still have a nice drape. I share your concern that underlined it could cause pulls or wrinkles.

    One of my guild members was making a number of summer dresses out of thinner knits. Since I work with a lot of knits she called me for advice. She didn't want to line summer dresses and neither would I! I suggested she make a nude colored tank style dress to wear under the dresses. That way she could make one item and wear it with many. She later told me it worked out beautifully. Just a thought on a slightly different way to approach it.

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    1. I have the same thoughts about the cowl. It draped so pretty on her with just the muslin knit so I'm not going to overload it with more fabric.

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  7. Why does this dress need a slit, Bunny? Looks like it would move just fine without one, eliminating one of your concerns. I recently made a dress with a cowl neck and lined it. The lining kept the cowl in place beautifully. Whatever you decide, I know it will be lovely and beautifully executed!

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    1. We thought the dress was so simple that the leg slit would be nice. I had mortal fear it would look like a long tee shirt. Looking at it now, I don't think that will happen but she likes the idea of the slit as well. Cissie, I would love to know if you did a free hanging lining or underlined. Thanks.

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  8. what about using the same fabric for the lining or making a facing out the fabric and attaching it to the seams near the split. I would eliminate the lining in the cowl also. Good luck!

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    1. The facing idea will work. I can't get anymore for a complete lining. Thanks for the idea, Tee.

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  9. I agree is a split really necessary? How high is the slit and could the lining end a the top of the slit and not extend to the hem?
    More questions than answers!

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    1. The slit is to the knee, nothing too provocative. No lining will be a definite show through of the difference.

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  10. I would do a lining instead of underlining so that the materials can move independently if needed.

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  11. Hi, I hopped to you from Georgia's blog. For the cowl, I know in professional sewing, they put a coin ( or other very light round weight) in the cowl inside to make it stay draped perfectly. I so like your pattern choice. Cheers, Jean. p.s. maybe no lining in the cowl so it will drape delicately.

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    1. I've read of the coin trick. This cowl has a fold at it's neckline edge. That makes two layers of fabric that go all the way down to about mid armscye and therefore self facing the cowl. Since the "facing", that under layer, is caught in the armscye I don't think there will be much issue with it lying right. We'll see and thanks for the tip.

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  12. I'd probably line it. Underlining knits I know only from swimsuits and personally I would also prefer the layers to be able to move separately. Just a feeling, not based on personal experience for such a dress. I used a cowl stay a few times to make sure the draped neckline doesn't shift too much.

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  13. I rather like how a knit dress wears with an underling. That way I never have to worry about it moving out of line with the dress at all.

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  14. Bunny, I did a free hanging lining rather than an underlining. I like the fact that it moves independently of the dress with no chance of wrinkles.

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  15. Thanks, everyone. I will cut today. First I will see how the fabrics lay out on top of each other once cut and will go from there. Fingers crossed and thanks so much everyone for the advice. It has been a tremendous help. I will keep you all posted. I hope to work on my jacket today as well.

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  16. Hi Bunny,

    Sorry if I am pitching in late. I would line rather than underline..............why?? My lovely Marfy dress, the main fabric has 2% stretch and Susan Khalje recommended not to underline but line if I couldn't find a fabric to underline that had the same stretch in it. As it is I have learned a lesson along the way as I lined in silk charmeuse...............thinking I was being a good girl and fell stitching it in by hand. The dress looked fabulous until I lined it and it did all sorts of weird and wonderful things..........................I have totally unpicked the lining in certain places, sleeves included so that the lining is free and its ok again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Such angst.

    Of course I know that the dress you are making will be just perfect. Can't wait to see the pictures of the Bridesmaid if you are able to post pictures after the big day.

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