19 September 2011

Fleur D'Orange Tutorial: Ins, Outs, and Arounds

I will be bringing home my guest post tutorials over the course of bringing home my baby (who slept 7 consecutive hours last night!!!!!), starting with my Project Run & Play tutorials. My original post for this Project Run & Play dress is found here.

Behind the scenes:  When I made this dress I used spherical beads instead of buttons down the back faux placket.  They looked really cool, and probably would have worked really well if the placket was down the front of the dress, but Pearl complained about sitting on them...princess and the pea? :)  So I removed them and sewed on regular flat, shank-less buttons that are more comfy to sit on.  With the weight of the fabric and the lining it was too hot to wear in the summer and now I can't wait to break it out again and see it on her...or Olive...or Azure...or Clover.

Fleur D'Orange: Ins, Outs, and Arounds

Keyhole Neckline

 o1  On the wrong side of the interfacing, draw a line, marking the front center of the garment in a contrasting color pencil or chalk.  Draw the neckline seam allowance so you know where to begin the keyhole.  Draw the keyhole the desired size, but leave space between the two points, as you will be cutting through that area.

o2  Pin the lining to the garment, right sides together.

o3  Decrease the length of your straight stitch [I put mine at about a 2.5].  This will help keep all the fabric threads from popping through when you turn it right side out.  Stitch around the neck perimeter.  This actually didn't fit over Pearl's head the first time, since there is no opening in the back, so I adjusted the neck hole, but retained the keyhole as is.  Clip around the opening, to the stitch line.  Turn right side out, carefully poking out the points of the keyhole.  I topstitched around the edge to hold it in place.

Contrasting Faux Placket

o1 The contrasting faux placket is as easy as putting a cherry on top of a sundae!  It's different than my other faux placket tutorial, which uses the same fabric as the dress.  Simply cut a strip of fabric three times the width you'd like the finished placket [and the same length as the dress], apply some lightweight fusible interfacing, fold in thirds, and press.  Pin in place with raw edge down, and stitch close to the edges down both sides.  Voila!

o2  The buttons are actually not buttons at all, but two beads.  First I added the larger bead and then a small seed bead to keep it in place, and went back down the same hole of the larger bead.

Quick Belt

o1  The belt is the same concept as the placket.  Cut a piece of fabric 3 times the width of the desired finished width.  Apply a heavyweight interfacing, fold in thirds.  The ribbon goes down the center with the raw edge of the belt facing up [so you may need to trim the edge of the belt fabric if the ribbon doesn't quite cover it.]  Sew the ribbon down the center along the edges.  Tuck the edges under and sew.

o2  Next comes the ties.  The ribbon I used had a definite wrong side, but I didn't have enough to double it, so I used a contrasting color for the back side.  Stitch right sides together, flip ribbons wrong sides together and stitch down each side.  Fasten to belt.

o3  I don't use a whole lot of the decorative stitches on my machine, but this scalloped one I do like to occasionally visit, like on this.  I used matching thread and sewed right along the edges, giving some visual interest.


**Side story of the fabric: although I preferably do not shop at Wal-mart, I go on occasion to pick up some thread or other sewing notion when emergencies arise [yes, I consider sewing to have emergencies].  One day I saw this fabric on the $1.50 table and snatched it up, only to discover it had a horrid smell--like a dead rodent.  I almost put it back, but knew I would think about it at nights, so I brought it home and washed it and washed and washed it until the smell was gone.  I was changing our sheets [white] the same day and thought I would throw it in one more time with the sheets, as I thought it had been sufficiently pre-washed.  Yes.  You guessed it.  Out came PEACH sheets with the fabric.  Moral: Cheap fabric isn't always so inexpensive!  [But, I still do love the vintage look of the fabric.]


  1. I admire anyone who can sew....It tries my patience getting it all neat and straight lines, so when I see such beautiful creations, I really admire them.

    Great about the baby sleeping 7 hours..yay

  2. Occasionally (or rarely) I find something good at Walmart. I recently found a really weird (it's really weird--no one else would have bought it) avocado green brocadish material for $1.50 but I haven't washed it yet. Waiting for the perfect project for avocado green.....

    And I consider sewing emergencies too. It's usually when I run out of white thread.

  3. A post with blue, orange, and Pearl?
    You made my day.

  4. Super cute. Love the keyhole and the buttons! Big fan of orange and blue.
    I recently ruined a beautiful white shirt with new fabric... next week it will be dyed with beets! Hopefully it will be wearable then!

  5. Adorable dress! Quick question/clarification though; at the beginning of step 03 of the keyhole neckline, you meant adjust stitch length, not width correct?

    Best regards, JoClare

  6. http://www.youcantcallitit.com/2011/09/16/no-name-no-big-dill/

    Did you know there is a site out there trying to help you name your little guy?
    Loving the visits to the past tutorials. Such lovely ideas!

  7. JoClare-ah. yes. you are correct.

    sallyavena-I know! It's getting serious, no?

  8. How does she sit down with those big round buttons down the whole back?

  9. Where did you get this orange collar?? it is gorgeous!!

  10. Love, love, love it! I have a "ginger" daughter and she is almost 19. I just sewed her a yoga skirt to send to college. I would love to make her a retro dress inspired by this dress here!


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