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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Christmas 2015: Black Dress with Gold Bias Binding for Mom

I'm back with more Christmas presents! This one is late to the blog because I originally made the sleeves too long, so the dress spent a lot of time next to my machine, waiting to be fixed. Oops :/

Anyway, this is a pattern that pops up every few months on the blog. Here's the original, which I made again. And again (all for my mom). Then I hacked it for a Mothers' Day present: long sleeves, scoop neck and t-shirt length. Then I figured I owed myself one, so I sewed another and hacked the sleeves again. 

Most of these makes have been fun, casual pieces, so I wanted to go a new direction with Mom's Christmas present and make a classier version. 

So I went shopping, because one can never have enough fabric. At Fabric Outlet, I found a nice, thick black knit and this beautiful gold knit. Love at first sight! The gold knit is so beautiful. 

I used the same silhouette, with the lower v-neck from this version and long sleeves from this version.


I cut bias strips from the gold knit and used it to finish the edges and cover the back seam. 

It's all attached with two rows of handstitching. 

On the back, I folded the raw edges under. 

But I left the raw edges out on the hem, sleeves and neckline. 

Mom says she's looking forward to wearing it to work, maybe there are more dresses like this in our future! 

See you next week, there's a couple more Christmas presents left...
-Taft WK

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Winter Formal Dress 2016

It's back! And, it's the least-procrastinated Winter Formal post to date! (You can also read about what I made in 2014 and 2015).

The theme this year was Black and White. Very classic, so I decided to go with a classic shape and find some nice fabric. I wanted this dress to be something I could definitely wear again. 

This is the fabric I found at Fabric Outlet. I got it during a (hang on, you're not going to see this coming)...sale! Yup, 40% off! I also posted a picture of it on Instagram:

My overall design for this dress was a fitted bodice and full skirt. And, of course, a pocket only big enough for my phone so I could make all of my friends jealous. Priorities. 

A photo posted by Taft Weber-Kilpack (@taftisseamstress) on

I started with a BurdaStyle bodice sloper and spent a lot of time altering it to achieve the exact fit I wanted. 

V-neck, waist darts, and a band at the waist. 

There's also waist dart and a v-neckline in the back, so the front and back mirror each other. 

The skirt (seen here with the mock-up bodice, sorry about bad lighting) is a double circle skirt. SO MUCH FABRIC. I love it! 

Here's the bodice made in the final fabric (and it's lying on top of my quilt!).

The fabric is a brocade, so it holds its shape very nicely. 

After that, I attached the lining, which I had interfaced and sewed the skirt to the bodice. I topstitched the lining down by hand, using little tiny stitches that are (hopefully) hardly visible around the neckline and armholes. I also blind-hemmed the skirt, which took forever. I accomplished a lot of Netflix while hand-stitching on this project. 

So...ta da!

(please ignore the dress form's bra straps...)

Invisible zipper on the side seam. 

A dress with a pocket! My favorite thing!

Here's my brother, helping to demonstrate the sheer volume of this skirt. I loved how it moved, the skirt was always lying differently and making different shapes. 

A photo posted by Taft Weber-Kilpack (@taftisseamstress) on

Here's a picture from the night of! My dress was comfortable and fun to dance in - a huge success!

On a side note, I will be switching back to a post every other Wednesday for the next couple months. Hopefully I can start posting more often after that. 

-Taft WK