While Shell’s dress is a modern wedding dress in most ways, I’m a historical seamstress. So I’m using historical construction techniques to make the dress.
This is most noticeable in the bust. To create the perfect shaping, and to make sure that there would be no chance of nipply weather, no matter how cold the day, I corded the bust panels.
Based on my previous experience with the evilness of cording, I decided to cord full pieces of fabric, and then to cut the bust panels out of those (rather than cording pre-cut panels).
Shell watched me cord the first piece of fabric, and got quite excited about documenting the process.
Felicity got excited about the process too. Felicity loves Shell. She can literally walk all over her.
It was fun letting Felicity get involved. Usually when I sew for clients I lock Felicity out of the room, and she sits outside the French doors and looks sad. But Shell is a good friend, and loves Felicity, so kitty got to sew with me.
Shell got to sew too. After I finished the first cording piece, she sewed the second one, to see how it went. It went well but evil-y. Now she knows what I went through for her dress.
Her cording wasn’t quite as tight and narrow as mine, but that’s not a problem, as the fine cording went on the inner bust panels, and the wider cording balanced out the outsides.
The technique worked beautifully. The shaping on the bust turned out perfect, it provided lots of support, no gaping, and it was even strong enough to withstand running bones across the bust without flattening it.
I used LOTS of bones on the bodice support. There is nothing worse than seeing a bride hiking up her strapless dress!
There are two bones running up the centre front, half bones ending just under the bust at the side-centre front, two bones running over each bust, a bone just at the side of the bust, and a bone on each side of the side seams. Plus, there are double bones at the side-back, and bones on either side of the back fastening.