Sunday, September 8, 2013

1944 House Dress Underlining and Snaps

Dear readers,

If you remember I created the 1944 House dress where I blogged about it HERE.
I did two techniques very different from my normal process.
First, I underlined the dress -- a different technique than a lining.
The fashion fabric was very sheer.
I chose a black batiste for the underlining.  In retrospect, a lighter weight voile fit the project better -- the batiste is a bit dense - making the dress a tad bit heavier -- and causing my fingers to be sore pushing the needles through the fabric for hand-stitching the finishes.  Threads has a great article on underlining that discusses the change of hand for the fashion fabric (click on the link to go there).  
Overall, I did find the underlining much easier to sewing rather than a lining in this project.  I serged the fabric fabric and underlining together and assembled the dress as I would if no lining was involved.  

I did think a red voile might have been a better background color -- but couldn't source the red locally, so I was eager to start the project and in the end, I'm happy with the black. 

The square collar, below, under construction was difficult to set correctly.  The picture blow shows the collar before I turned it inside out and top-stitched it.  The corners were especially challenging.  The setting may have been easier without the underlining, in this instance.

I will make this dress again -- but I will do so without the underlining.  That will make for a super simple and easy project, since I have all the details worked out now. 
Note to self:  For three years, I've been using cheap serger thread.   I finally changed to Maxi-Lock  -- it has made all the difference.  I love it.  No breaks, and much easier to thread the serger.  I have a vintage serger, the Bernette 334, made by Juki around 1980.  All steel baby.  And, the smell of ozone while it's serging. 

Second, in the construction of the dress - I used heavy duty snaps.  The snaps make the dress so easy to get in and out of (Easy In -  Easy Out).  I also preferred heavy snaps so there were no surprises when I was wearing the dress during the day.  I found it very tricky to insert the snaps - both process-wise and in the execution -- that is, ensuring the correct distance between the snaps. I used the Home Pro Tool set, with nailhead and eyelet die sets (bought at Ace Sewing) in the LA Fashion District. 
Having the correct tools is key in the snap world.   I don't know if I would recommend this set yet.  It seems more substantial than the hand tools.  It has no directions that accompany the piece.  I know it does a variety of services - - but can't figure out (yet) everything.  I originally bought this when I was in the middle of my jeans obsession.  I had a hand tool that broke.  But this set is expensive, considering that I don't bedazzle everything.  But perhaps I should rethink that and start bedazzling everything.   That would bring down my cost per bedazzle. 

What snap tool do you use?



  1. I use a Snapsetter thingie ... which means pounding with a hammer and scaring the crap out of my dogs when I use it. Hahahaha

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    2. Oops darn spelling checker. I meant to say I have the same issues with my snap setter thingie. I found it difficult to get through thick fabrics. And, it scares my dog too!

  2. I've only done the one jeans and used the hand tool sold at Hancock for rivets and jeans button - haven't done snaps yet, but I love your use of the term bedazzle!

  3. Thanks -- perhaps we all need to bedazzle more:)