Ballroom Dance > Sprucing up my Standard gown - sewing questions!

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by musicbrain, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. datitmarsh

    datitmarsh New Member

    Oh that's a good idea. I will try that, thanks!
     
  2. SwayWithMe

    SwayWithMe Well-Known Member

    I'm about to start upgrading my very basic Standard gown, and would like to address a few structural issues first. I've installed a bra in place of the cups it came with, and am making a new strap for the back.

    Current question: It has a halter-type neckline with a hook and bar closure at the back. The straps are simply two layers of Lycra, so it doesn't offer much support for my DD girls, and the hook "pulls" leaving the back neck looking rather strained. Can I kill two birds with one stone by threading elastic up through the straps, sewn through the top of the bra and the end of the strap?
    IMG_9443.JPG
     
  3. 3wishes

    3wishes Well-Known Member

    You could do that. OR, cut the straps out of a "used up", can't wear it anymore bra you have, cover them with stretch fabric or nude mesh, add stones to straps and sew-attach to your cups and the back where the older straps are. I've done this many times. Works like a charm.
     
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  4. SwayWithMe

    SwayWithMe Well-Known Member

    So... eliminate the halter neck entirely and do a criss-cross back instead? I still have the straps from the bra I sacrificed for the cause...
     
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  5. 3wishes

    3wishes Well-Known Member

    Yes. Or do a Z pattern with strapping. Pin desire straps for placement purposes before getting rid of old sewn in dress straps. See if the new placement will work. Basically play with new placements before cutting the old straps out. Try on dress. Have some take pics or video of you moving in new placement pinned strapping. If you like it and it feels right, go for it.
     
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  6. bia

    bia Well-Known Member

    I'm thinking of changing the floats for one of my dresses from a big wrist-to-wrist chiffon drape to ribbons. Is there anything particular to know before I order ribbon? I'm assuming that any nice double-faced satin polyester ribbon should work, right? What would you say is the best width? It's a dark purple dress, stoned with both tanzanite and deep tanzanite, and I'm going back and forth between just dark purple ribbons or two-tone, matching the stones. I expect I should just buy both and see how it looks both ways, but if anyone has opinions, I'd love to hear them.
     
  7. datitmarsh

    datitmarsh New Member

    Oh I will join in the floats question too. Pro suggested wrist and elbow dangly types. Trying to look at photos generally shows floats 'floating'.....So it's hard to see how they are cut, like shapewise. I was thinking maybe spirals? Or something that goes from wrist to elbow/shoulder? Any help much appreciated.
     
  8. Sania

    Sania Well-Known Member

    Has anyone made the type of Latin costume that is basically a leotard and some fabric draped over it?

    Two questions:

    1. Any hints on how to cut the fabric, is it on the bias, what shape the cut fabric should be, etc.?

    2. The fabric that I have is a very pretty heavy weight purple power mesh. I have 5 yards, so there should be plenty to work with. When I showed it to my pro his first comment was "that fabric is see-through" yet I know that latin costumes are often made out of power mesh. Should I consider using two layers of fabric once I figure out the proper shape? Or should I assume that it's a drapey costume and my body is covered by the leotard and that it's all good?

    Any advice is much appreciated!
     
  9. SwingingAlong

    SwingingAlong Well-Known Member

    I would do this too!
     
  10. SwingingAlong

    SwingingAlong Well-Known Member

     
  11. SwingingAlong

    SwingingAlong Well-Known Member

    I have been having fun with making stuff:) I have learnt so mach, just doing these. Still a way to go - don't feel I have the cut of the back and sides quite right on either of them. And while I love the colour combo on the rose dress, I'm not sure it suits me particularly....do like the blue one though. Happy with how the hibiscus turned out. Hopefully they are recognizable!! Interesting how much more the red chiffon floats stand out, as opposed to the blue (organza).
    Bluedress1.jpg bluedress2.jpg bluedress3.jpg rosedress1.jpg rosedress2.jpg rosedress3.jpg
     
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  12. 3wishes

    3wishes Well-Known Member

    Sania, do you have access to a sewing body dummy? I have one. I suggest putting your leotard on the sewing dummy and draping your fabric, using long sewing pins to place it for the drape affect your looking for, before cutting. Also, yes, cut on the bias. The amount of layers depends on your ultimate image and the movement of the finished product that your going for.
     
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  13. Sania

    Sania Well-Known Member

    Thanks! I do have one and will experiment. The challenge will be to get that cool drapey look without looking too large in the process. The fallback would be a more fitted and flared skirt with some kind of crisscross draping at front or back to get the movement of the fabric and feel of the drape.

    - do more layers = more movement or less movement?
     
  14. 3wishes

    3wishes Well-Known Member

    Less layers, mid-weight or chiffon type, moves well. However, if the fabric is very light you can double up and achieve the same affect.
     
    Sania likes this.
  15. datitmarsh

    datitmarsh New Member

    In a standard underskirt, if I were to add ruffles at lower end to create fullness, is it better to do gathered or circular ruffle? Or is it just a personal preference?
     
  16. 3wishes

    3wishes Well-Known Member

    I've had both. Realize when you add this, the weight of your costume changes, and you may have to adjust your hemline.
     
  17. flying_backwards

    flying_backwards Active Member

    A circular ruffle makes a more swirly flare-out and has less fabric per yard of circumference. If you have the patience to sew a fishing line hem to the ruffle then you get even more swirl power.

    To my eye, a gathered ruffle is not the look I associate with Standard gowns.
     
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  18. datitmarsh

    datitmarsh New Member

    Oh thank you. I was planning the circular ones with horsehair. Would that increase the swirl power?
     
  19. flying_backwards

    flying_backwards Active Member

  20. datitmarsh

    datitmarsh New Member

    Awesome, thanks!
     

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