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Strapless corset dress

4.5/5

Style analysis: strapless dress with vertical princess cuts on bodice, straight neckline, underbust and waist cuts slightly V-shaped, paneled pencil skirt. It's realized in slightly stretch denim with topstitching, but any fabric with similar characteristics will work. If you choose a fabric that requires lining (absent in this denim version) pay attention for lining to be stretch too.

To draft the pattern, start by drawing a contoured block on your personal measurements. Contoured means that the pattern has exactly the same measurements as your body, as no wearing ease is needed if you use a fabric with some stretch.
If you use a non stretch fabric, we suggest adding 2 or 3cm ease to waist and hip circumference. Our method for calculating ease, drafting made to measure patterns and fitting them is include in our basic blocks course/module 1.
If you are interested in corsets, the topic is covered in our
basic blocks course/module 2.

Step 1

Trace a copy of your contoured block, front and back separate.

On both pieces adjust length to ankles (or to desired length).

On back:

  • reduce 2cm at waist in center back, blend to zero at neckline and hipline
  • balance the reduction in center by reducing dart width (dart becomes smaller)
  • from armpit level drop 1cm along side seam and 3cm in center back, then draw back neckline connecting the two points.

On front:

  • mark a point 1cm below armpit on side seam
  • measure 7 to 10cm above bust point on both shoulder dart lines (measure on yourself how much coverage above breasts you want)
  • draw the new neckline from armpit to dart points, then perpendicular to center front
  • widen shoulder dart by 1cm at neckline to have it tighter to chest.
Step 2

Cut through new neckline, then:

  • on back, reduce dart width (in our example to 2cm), then square down from dart apex to skirt hemline
  • on front, highlight underbust line and make sure waist dart is 3cm wide from waist to underbust.
Step 3

Cut through back slash line discarding dart volume: you get center back and side back panel.

On front, draw the slash line from dart apex to hemline and get ready to cut through it.

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