I officially started on the wedding dress yesterday. I am so excited...I had to tell myself to slow down and take my time because I could have easily stayed up all night working on it, but I don't do well sewing at night...my sewing performance goes dramatically down as I get more and more tired!
I was quite pleased with what I did get done yesterday though. I made some final alterations to the muslin, (decided on my sleeves ect.) and then got the entire bodice cut out of the satin, lining, interlining, and organza fabric. That took awhile because I was extremely careful. Then I marked my seam allowences on the interlining pieces (which will be closest to my skin). Then I hand-basted the 3 layers (satin, interlining, and organza) together on each bodice piece.
Today I sewed and pressed my princess seams. Tomorrow I will work on the lace for the bodice. I learned how to properly press alencon lace today...according to Susan Khalje, it is important to use a heavy terry cloth towel on the ironing board and place the lace right side down on that. This prevents the texture of the lace from being flattened during pressing. Next I learned that it is best to use a damp pressing cloth to protect the lace and to create a bit of steam to help the net on the lace to shrink and lay flat between the motifs. Needless to say, my lace looked a lot better after I pressed it!
I have spent quite a bit of time reading some of the books and articles I had on creating a seamless lace bodice. I decided not to cut out the lace and treat it as one with the bodice (even though that would have been easiest) because I didn't want the princess and side seams to cut through the designs on lace and mar its beauty. What I am going to do is to fit and shape the lace to the bodice front and the two back pieces (before the side and shoulder seams are sewn) by taking little darts or tucks in the lace, clipping the underlap and sewing the overlap in place. The lace will be pretty dense on the bodice. Because I am so small busted, and because the lace has some natural stretch, this process should work fairly well. It does in my head anyway. =)
I am so pleased with my lace. It is so perfect and exactly what I wanted! The top picture is the lace that will will use for the border along the bottom of the skirt. It will be cut apart to get two borders. The pictures on the bottom is the lace that will be used to cover the bodice and the sleeves. The border on it will go around the waist and sleeve hem. The extra motifs from the 1 yard we bought will be used on the skirt around the bottom to make the border come up higher.