Sunday, May 25, 2014

Sew-Along #14 - Frannie Dress - Preparations

The Frannie Dress by Children's Corner

Before we begin the sew-along on Wednesday, May 28th, you'll want to gather a few items and do a few things to prepare.

Items to Collect
  1. You must have the Frannie dress pattern by Children's Corner to complete this project.  If you have not yet purchased it, please do so here.
  2. If you do not have fabric for the project you will want to purchase that also.  At the time of this writing we do have a some fabric kits available.  We also have lots of fun fabric selections on our website.  
  3. You will need coordinating thread to complete this project.  The project kits did not come with thread, so please make sure you have some.  
  4. We will be using ric-rac to trim out the collar in this sew-along.  If you would also like to use ric-rac we do have a wide range of colors available on our site. The kits do come with ric-rac so if you purchased a kit from us you are good to go.
  5. You will need a small button to close the back of the dress.  The kits do come with a button.
  6. We will also be adding decorative buttons to the front of the dress during the sew-along.  If you would like to purchase some from us we carry a wide selection of adorable Riley Blake buttons.  Again, the kits do come with decorative buttons, so if you purchase a kit no need to buy more.
  7. I like to add a bit of fusible interfacing behind the buttons when I make the Frannie to give them some strength.  You only need a small piece.  About 1½" by 8" will do.  The kits do come with fusible interfacing, so you are all set with a kit.
  8. You will need some sort of fabric marking instrument.  You can use chalk, a marking pencil, washable fabric pen; even a bar of soap will work.
  9. And finally, you will need pins, a sewing machine, a good iron (a steam iron is preferable for sewing), a pair of fabric shears or a rotary cutter and mat, and a ruler.  

Optional Items to Collect - The following items are totally optional.

  1. I will be tracing the pattern pieces onto freezer paper.  I highly recommend this method.  In addition to keeping your original pattern pieces intact, it also makes cutting out your fabric super simple. You can find freezer paper at most grocery stores where the wax paper and aluminum foil. 
  2. A sharpie or other permanent marker for tracing your pattern pieces onto the freezer paper is helpful.  I recommend a black sharpie as the colored ones, though more fun, can tend to transfer onto your fabrics when you iron over them.  Ack!  Had that happen recently and I was so sad.
  3. We will be making a buttonhole loop on the back of the dress.  If you have access to embroidery floss you might find it is easier to work with than sewing thread for this step.  If not, you can just use sewing thread.
  4. You will find it much easier to attach your ric-rac to your collar if you use either Wonder Tape or a glue pen.  I prefer the Wonder Tape.  It's a double sided tape that washes completely away when you are done.  You can find it at most any fabric or discount store that carries sewing supplies.  If you don't have Wonder Tape you can just use a child's washable glue stick for the ric-rac.

Things to Do
  1. Make sure to prewash and preshrink all of your fabrics.  I wash my fabrics on warm/hot and then I dry my fabrics in the dryer with no softeners.  I always preshrink this way when I am using fabric for clothing construction.  I would hate to work hard on something only to have it shrink and not fit when I was done.
  2. You should also prewash your ric-rac. Prewashing will help prevent any bleeding when you launder your completed garment.  First, take a match or lighter and lightly melt the edges of your trim so that is won't fray.  Then, using a lingerie bag if you have one, wash your ric-rak on warm/hot in your washer.  If you don't have a lingerie bag you can just wash your ric-rac in the sink by hand.  Hang your ric-rac to dry. 
  3. Prewash your fusible interfacing to preshrink it.  This will prevent any wrinkles or waves that might arise when you launder your garment.  To prewash your interfacing simply soak it in a sink for about 5 minutes in very warm water.  You don't want the water too hot to avoid removing the iron-on finish, but you do want it warm enough to shrink the interfacing.  After soaking, just pat it with a clean towel and hang it to dry.
  4. Press your fabrics well.  I try to do this straight out of the dryer so that the wrinkles come out easier.  
  5. If you haven't already, join our Facebook Sew-Along Group so you can post your progress pictures.
Happy Sewing,
Danielle Storm

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