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AUTUMN BLOOMS button dress: Add a unique touch to a kimono or raglan-sleeved top or dress by inserting buttons into the shoulder seam. Choose your buttons to make a splash or go subtle on one shoulder or two.

SUPPLIES

* Woven top or dress pattern with raglan or kimono-style sleeves

* Fabric (amount according to the pattern envelope plus 1/4 yard; see "Sources.")

* Notions (according to the pattern envelope)

* All-purpose thread

* Buttons (quantity depending on shoulder length, pattern, desired spacing and button size)

* Rotary cutting system

* Loop turner or tiny safety pin

* Removable fabric marker

* Expandable sewing gauge (optional)

* Bias tape maker (optional)

RAGLAN SLEEVE HACK

Place buttons along a front raglan sleeve seamline to add a flair to a simple top. Choose to add the buttons to one shoulder or both.

PREPARE

Before beginning, read through all instructions of the chosen pattern and this hack. Use this information to determine the best way to execute this hack for the chosen pattern, as well as the preferred neck finish.

CUT

From the fabric, cut all pieces as indicated on the pattern guidesheet, excluding any neckbands or facings.

From the remaining fabric, cut bias strips, using the chart below to calculate the width for neck and button placket/shoulder seams.

To figure out the length of bias tape needed, measure your pattern pieces using the guides below. For curved seams, such as the neckline, it may be easiest to use a bendable ruler or a tape measure. All measurements are taken along the edge of the pattern.
                        BIAS TAPE WIDTH

Seam                 Neckline Facing
Allowance            (single fold bias tape)
            Bias Width                Bias Tape Maker

1/4"        1"                        12mm
3/8"        Trim seam allowance  to 1/4" and use provided measurement.
5/8"        Trim seam allowance to
            1/4" or 3/8" and use the provided.
5/8"

Seam            Neckline Binding          Button Placket/Shoulder Seam
Allowance      (double fold bias tape)    Facing (single fold bias tape)
            Bias Width  Bias Tape Maker   Bias Width   Bias Tape Maker

1/4"        1"          12mm              1"           12mm
3/8"        1 1/2       18mm              1"           12mm
5/8"                                      1"           12mm
5/8"                                      1 1/2        18mm

               MEASUREMENTS TO DETERMINE BIAS TAPE LENGTH

Project  1 Placket/Sleeve               Both Sides    Additional Length

Raglan   Bodice front measuring:                      Neckline = (Bodice
                                                      front + bodice
                                                      back + sleeve) x 2
         Neckline to armscye curve x 2                Note: Include seam
         (along the raglan seam)                      allowance for
                                                      bodice front, back
                                                      and sleeves

                                        Multiply the
                                        measurement
                                        for one side
                                        by 2.
                                                      Neckline =
                                                      ((Bodice front +
                                                      bodice back) x 2)
                                                      + 1"
                                                      Include seam
                                                      allowance
                                                      attaching front to
                                                      back.
Kimono   Back shoulder seam x 2                       Sleeve = (sleeve
                                                      hem front + sleeve
                                                      hem back) x 2
                                                      Note: If doing the
                                                      hack to both
                                                      shoulders
                                                      multiply the
                                                      sleeve bias tape
                                                      length by 2

                                         Button Loop Bias Strips
Fabric Type                          Bias Strip Width  Seam Allowance

Lightweight fabrics such as          1 1/2             3/8"
rayon challis, cotton lawn or voile
Quilting weight fabrics                                Scant 1/4" from
                                                       fold


Depending on the needed length, it may be necessary to piece some strips together. Align the diagonal ends of two strips with right side together. The corners will extend beyond the strips. Stitch using a 1/4" seam allowance (1). Continue to join bias strips until the desired length is reached. Press the seam allowances open and trim the points.

From the remaining fabric, cut bias strips for button loops using the guide at right. The length will depend on how many buttons will be used. To keep the two edges closer together, opt for more buttons. Note: the featured raglan top's buttons are 1 1/4 apart, while the kimono-style dress's buttons are closer to 2' apart. A good estimate is that one button will be needed for each 2 1/2". This can be adjusted depending on button size.

CONSTRUCT

Construct the pattern according to the guidesheet until it comes to attaching the sleeves.

Staystitch the neckline just inside the pattern's seam allowance. Note that the neckline seam allowance is often less than the rest of the garment's seam allowance.

Mark the front bodice 1 1/2" to 2" above where the armscye begins to curve. Baste along the seam allowance from the neckline to 1/2 past the mark. If adding buttons to both sleeves, repeat on the other side of the front bodice.

To create the button loops, fold the bias strip in half lengthwise with right sides together. Stitch, using the seam allowance provided on page 43. Don't trim the seam allowance. Note: The length of the button loop bias strip doesn't need to be continuous; repeat these steps for each length of bias if using more than one.

Trim one end of the tube at an angle, then turn right side out using a loop turner or a tiny safety pin, pulling the comer of the angled cut through the tube.

Cut a length of 2 1/2" per button from the tubing. Pinch the ends together and secure them with a wide zig-zag stitch within 1/4" from the ends (2)

Wrap the loop around the button and mark just past where the button passes through (3). The mark is where the button loop will align with the seamline. Repeat for each length of tubing.

Pin a button loop on the bodice front at the mark. Pin a second loop just to the inside of the seam allowance at the neckline. Pin the button loops so that they lay flat along the seam.

Using an expandable sewing gauge, mark the locations for the additional button loop placements. If you do not have a gauge, mark the halfway point between the two loops. Measure the remaining space, and mark even-spaced locations for the remaining button loops. Pin all loops in place, and stitch with a scant seam allowance for the pattern (4).

Align the bodice front to the sleeve with right sides together. Baste from the first button loop toward the curve for 1". Pin the sleeve to the bodice front beginning 1/2" below the bottom button loop to the side seam; stitch. Snip the seam allowance at the bottom of the button placket and finish underarm seam as desired.

Cover the button loops on the bodice front with bias tape, right sides together, and pin in place. The bias tape must be approximately 1/2" longer on the underarm seam side of the placket (5). Stitch the bias tape to the bodice front using the patterns seam allowance along the full length of the button placket.

Trim the seam allowance to 1/4". Open the bias strip toward the seam allowance, press and understitch the seam allowance to the bias strip, keeping the front and button loops out of the way. Fold the bias strip under the seam allowance toward the seam; press.

Fold the end that meets the underarm seam under for a clean finish on the inside. Pin in place and edge stitch. Repeat on the other side of the button placket.

To finish the neckline with bias binding, begin by measuring the neckline and cutting a strip of bias tape 1" longer than the measurement. If adding buttons to both shoulders, measure the front and back necklines separately and add 1" to each measurement for the length of bias tape needed for the front and back necklines. Refer to the chart on page 43 for how to handle the different seam allowance measurements.

Find the center mark of the bias tape and pin-mark it. Find the halfway point on the neckline, equidistant from the shoulder opening, and pin-mark it as well. With right sides together, unfold one side of the bias tape and pin the two pin marks together with the raw edges aligned. Pin 1/2" from the edge of the bias tape to the neckline opening on each side.

Evenly distributing the bias tape along the neckline on each half and, slightly stretching if necessary, pin the bias tape to the neckline. Stitch the bias tape to the neckline along the bias tape's unfolded crease (6).

Open the bias tape on one of the ends, toward the neckline, completely unfolding it (7).

Fold the bias tape down with right sides together along the center crease line, keeping the bottom fold open. Pin in place. Stitch from the inside of the garment along the placket/shoulder seam from fold line to fold line (8). Trim the seam allowance of bias tape to 1/4". Turn the end right side out, tucking ends under the bias tape to hide them. Repeat on the other side.

Fold the bias tape right side out along the entire neckline and pin in place, making sure that the back fold is under the neckline seam. Edgestitch the neckline from the front along the bias tape, catching the back of the bias tape in the stitches. Press.

Complete the garment as directed by pattern instructions.

Align the shoulder seams to mark the button placement. The closer the buttons are placed to the seam, the larger the gap will be. To eliminate a gap, butt the seams together to mark the button placement.

KIMONO-STYLE SLEEVE HACK

This technique uses a similar technique as the raglan sleeve top, but with different placement details and a bias facing at the neckline instead of a binding. Either neckline finish can be used with either pattern.

PREPARE & CUT

Prepare and cut the pieces for the kimono-style sleeve pattern as for the raglan sleeve pattern. Prepare bias tape as outlined in the chart on page 43.

CONSTRUCT

Construct the pattern according to the guidesheet until it comes to attaching the front to the back for a kimono-style sleeve.

Staystitch the neckline just inside the pattern's seam allowance. Note that the neckline seam allowance is often less than the rest of the garment's seam allowance.

Baste along the seam allowance of the back shoulder seam. If adding buttons to both sleeves, repeat on the other back shoulder seam.

Create the button loops per the raglan sleeve instructions.

Pin a button loop on the bodice front just inside the neckline stay-stitching. Pin a second loop at the point of the shoulder. Pin the button loops so that they lay flat along the seam.

Using an expandable sewing gauge, mark the locations for the additional button loop placements. If you do not have a gauge, mark the halfway point between the two loops. Measure the remaining space, and mark even spaced locations for the remaining button loops. Pin all loops in place, and stitch with a scant seam allowance for the pattern (9)

Cover the button loops on the back shoulder seam with a piece of bias tape the same length as the shoulder seam, with raw edges aligned and right sides together; pin. Stitch the bias tape to the back shoulder seam using the pattern's seam allowance the full length of the shoulder seam.

Trim the seam allowance to 1/4",

Open the bias strip toward the seam allowance, press and understitch the seam allowance to the bias strip, keeping the front and button loops out of the way. Fold the bias strip under the seam allowance toward the seam; press.

To finish the neckline using a bias facing, prepare the neckline bias strips and stitch them to the neckline per the raglan sleeve instructions, ending before finishing the ends.

If desired, understitch the bias tape to the seam allowance.

Clip the curves of the neckline, being careful not to cut through the stitches. Turn the bias tape to inside of garment. Fold the ends of the bias tape under twice, tucking the raw edges in, trimming any excess as needed. Pin. then edgestitch the bias tape in place along the folded edge and up the ends to enclose them. Press. Note: The sleeve hem will need to be completed in the same way as the neckline after the front and back have been stitched together

Complete the garment as directed by pattern instructions.

Align the shoulder seams to mark the button placement The closer the buttons are placed to the seam, the larger the gap will be. To eliminate a gap, butt the seams together to mark the button placement.

SOURCES

Art Gallery Fabrics supplied the featured fabrics: arrgalleryfabrics.com.

Allie Olson Patterns provided the Coram Top pattern: allieolson.com.

BY STEPHANIE BRACELIN
COPYRIGHT 2019 Creative Crafts Group, LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2019 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
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Author:Bracelin, Stephanie
Publication:Sew News
Date:Jul 31, 2019
Words:2013
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