Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Dolly Couture 101: The Classic Draped Couture Gown (VIDEO)

Dolly Couture inspired by Zuhair Murad.
 After having featured posts on the Charles James exhibition in New York and the most recent Haute Couture week in Paris, I thought this would be a good time to revisit couture "draping" techniques we posted a while ago. This time I've prepared a video:

For the 12" fashion doll, you'll need a length of fabric roughly 36 by 18 inches. Use it width wise and not length wise as stated in the video. Should you misjudge the amount need (which is what originally happened in the video) you can simply sew on an extension which you will steam press until barely noticeable.

Here are the important things to keep in mind:
1. Find a photo of a dress that inspires you and keep it in sight while you're working.

2. Analyze the design to discern out how it was made. Decide where the dress will close (side, back, front). Use hooks & eyes. And make design decisions as to what you'll do with the back since you cannot see it in the photo.

3. Make the foundation out of a structured fabric. It should not be stretch nor soft. Try to match it to the color of the dress. Complete it right down to the closure and put it on the doll.
4. The foundation can be a full sheath dress, a strapless mini (like mine), a corset or one-shouldered. It depends on the ultimate design of the dress and the amount of control you'll need over the movement of the folds.
5. Your thread should match your fabric.
6. You can use almost any material for the dress fabric provided it is not too thick or too stiff.
7. Take your time when stitching the fabric to the foundation. Remove the pinned dress from the doll prior to stitching down the folds. Try to slide the needle between the layers so they remain as invisible as possible but don't pull your stitches too tight. It will shrink your dress.

8. Don't despair if the result is not a line for line copy of the original. Often, the imperfections make it more interesting AND it makes the original dress your own!
Use this technique for an all over draped effect or simply in small areas like over a bodice or corset.

The possibilities are limitless. Once you get the feel for it, explore your own designs!!!

Follow us on Twitter: @FashDollStylist
We're also on Pinterest: pinterest.com/FashDollStylist


We love hearing from you. Your comment will be published shortly.