Thursday, July 21, 2011

FIDM Frustration: #2 The "I Don't Give A Damn" Dress

I stayed up to 3am working last night and only got 2.5 hrs of sleep so apparently I do give a damn, but toward the end I wasn't trying as hard.  I started getting loopy that night and started humming really odd things like the William Tell Overture and quoting Rhett Butler from Gone With the Wind.  I was tired (and still am).

I had a week to drape a sheath dress, pattern it out with an all in one facing and sew it with zipper and kick pleat.  Doesn't sound so bad, but there's just one problem...I don't know how to drape.  It just doesn't come naturally to me.  Last Friday I worked for 5 hours draping and then working out the pattern pieces only to realize that the pattern was total crap! It was awful! Nothing balanced! The fronts and backs didn't match at all and it wasn't fixable.  I broke down and gave up.  I was a devastating day.

Monday I tried again with much better results.  6 hours later I had a draped design, and most of a pattern.  It seemed to fit the dress form pretty well too.  Whew!  I finished it last night (made patterns for the facings, interfacings and figured out the kick pleat).  Then I sewed.  On top of that I had to finish 20 concept sketches, 3 flats of Theory outfits, and a research paper.  I was done with my dress except hand stitching down the facing to the zipper tape.

The drape was frustrating and so was sewing the damn thing.  It was going really smoothly until I got to the facing.  My instructor told me I could install the zipper first in the CB. Bad idea!  I ended up with mobius strip from hell and had to rip out part of the facing and sew it the home sewing way.  I sewed the shoulder seams of the fashion fabric then tucked the facing shoulder seams in and hand-stitched.  Not perfect and I thought it looked gross, but my teacher didn't notice.

It was one of the better dresses in the class.

Here's a cruddy cell phone picture from class:

Wow!  It's interesting to see just how bad a photo makes my dress look!  I hate this muslin too.  You press it, and it wrinkles again in 5 seconds.  

I have so much homework this week, but the Boyfriend is moving in, so that will be nice.  Just hectic.  I don't know how I'm going to fit everything in!


  1. Your dress looks great. Do you fit in it??? Would make a cute LBD ;)

    Keep on trucking! Draping gets easier.


  2. Having one of the best dresses in classs is a terrific accomplishment. Good going! And, you WILL fit everything in. Yes, you will. Remember, you already got yourself an education in science, so this is definitaly doable. Go, go go! (I know--easy for me to say)!

  3. We kind of had text books (public school = profs that know we didn't have funds). Our draping book was Draping for Fashion Design by Hilde Jaffe. I had the 1970s edition for dirt cheap, but my prof taught exactly by the book so we never actually needed the book if you took really good notes. I did take a lot of fashion classes in a community college in sf before I went -- my draping prof taught out of Draping for Apparel Design by Joseph-Armstrong. The concept didn't click in my head until I went to FIT. What do you think of the Alva form? I've been window shopping for my own.

    for future reference: myrlegacy AT gmail :)

  4. Remember when we used to stay up studying all the time. Huming and quoting movies was on the mild side of what we did when we were loopy then. Man, we're getting old!

    Keep it up bec. You can do it!

    PS - tell the boyfriend hello from me and let him know he should work on his cutting skills so he can help you out sometimes :)