Thursday, 27 December 2012

On Trend: DIY Colour Block Tank Dress

Have a bright and colourful summer in this easy to create Colour Block Tank Dress from Sweet Verbena, a blog filled with fashion how-to’s and creative guides.

You’ll need:
  • A tank top/t-shirt in your size
  • 3/4" Clear Elastic (about a yard give or take)
  • Lightweight Cotton Fabric (1 yard -give or take- of each color)
  • Optional 1 yard Muslin (for lining)
  • Thread to match your trim fabric.

Begin by trying on your tank/tee. Make a mark about 3/4 an inch below your natural waist.
Cut straight across where you just made the mark. You can save the bottom portion of the tee as a guide for making more dresses.
To determine how much elastic you'll need, measure the width of the bottom of the tank. Take this number, multiply by 2 and add 0.5.
Stretch the elastic out a little bit and then lay the two ends on top of each other with about an inch of overlap. Sew so that you have a loop of elastic.
Lay your elastic loop on the right side of the tank. Pin in place. The loop should be just a tad smaller than the tank.
Sew with a stretch or zig-zag stitch, pulling the elastic lightly as you go.
You want the (two) panels of your skirt to be 30.5 cm (12") wider than the width of your tank. Cut as shown below. Cut along the fold so that you have two panels of fabric.
The length of the dress will also depend on your body type and preference. For Katy, who's 5'9" and whose dress came to just right above the knee, the measurements were as follows: 53.5 cm (21") of the main fabric colour (red/navy) and 20.5 cm (8") of the trim (mint).
Finish the edges of the strips if you'd like. Pin and sew.
If you don't care about having pockets, go ahead and skip the next few steps. But bear in mind that they're really not too much extra work, and worth it to have a place to put your hands, phone, etc.
Fold your remaining trim fabric so that you have four layers of fabric on top of one another. Lay your hand down and free hand a pocket pattern. One side of the pocket should be a straight line. The rest doesn't really matter too much, kind of a slanty oval works best.
Or you know, cut a heart valentine style and cut along the fold.
Right sides together, pin the pockets about 8 cm (3 inches) down from the top of each panel. You'll want to be as exact as possible so that everything lines up properly.
Sew with a 0.635 cm (1/4") inseam. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.
Iron the seams open.
Now lay the panels, with pockets outstretched, right sides together. Take care to line up the trim at the bottom and everything else accordingly. Sew as shown.
Use the iron to shape, and hey look, you just made pockets.
Depending on your fabric, you might want to line the skirt. You can get away without on darker fabrics, but lighter fabrics are usually more transparent. Cut two panels of muslin to the same dimensions as your panels. Sew together opposite sides with the same inseam as you did your skirt.
Sew or serge the muslin layer and the skirt together as shown. They are only joined together by that top stitch.
Set your straight stitch to the longest length setting and sew two gathering stitches (about 1/4" apart).
Pull the top threads to create a nice, uniform gather.
Now with the tank/tee right side out and the skirt wrong side out, insert the tank as shown.
Pin the bottom of the tank to the top of the skirt.
Sew (with a stretch or zig zag stitch) very carefully and slowly with a half inch inseam. Once you've gone full circle, go around once more for good measure.
Finally hem the bottom and finish the lining. You may need to cut it about an inch shorter than the rest of the skirt so that it doesn't peek out.

We may not be able to supply the tank top, but we’ve got a fabulous selection of cotton dress fabric perfect for this project and others. Just give us a call on our Golden Number: 0861 322 839 | 0861 FAB TEX for what’s in stock and on special.  You can also send us a FRIEND REQUEST on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and stay up to date with the latest news and specials.

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