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A Special Macaron, Pt 1

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(my to-do list)

I usually don’t post in progress posts. It’s hard for me to get excited about a garment when I don’t know what it looks like on a person, ya know? But this is a special dress so I’m making an exception, plus I’d probably like some documentation of what I did purely for personal reasons. πŸ˜‰

So, um, yeah… I’m getting married. Woohoo! But I admit I’m not much excited about the whole wedding extravaganza – except the dress. I could make tons of wedding dresses. I could just swim in lace and silk and trims and beading all day long but the dress I’m making is pretty simple. I want something short and cute that’s not strapless.

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I’m making a Colette Macaron! I already made this one recently that served as a test version. I’m pretty lucky, the size 4 fits with no changes needed so I can move right along into making the final dress.

My main shell fabric is a silk/rayon blend satin (which was so much less expensive than buying real silk duchess satin). I wouldn’t say it’s stiff but it’s really stable and will hold pleats well.

The underlining is a plain silk organza which is working out great ’cause I can tack all my seam allowances and blind hemming to the organza and leave the shell fabric hole-free.

The yoke is a soft organza (the upper fabric in the top picture). It’s semi sheer and only a little firmer than chiffon but not much. It’s kind of a pain to work with, especially with the seams.

I’m using the shell fabric to create bias binding for the neckline and sleeves.

I still haven’t decided if I want to line the dress. If I do I’ll buy some white silk habotai. I don’t have to insert a lining for awhile so I have time to mostly assemble the dress and decide what I want to do. If I don’t I’ll just wear/make a slip/half slip of some sort. Oh, who am I kidding, I’m probably just going to make a lining…

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Finally for the waistband I’m hand attaching this beaded trim which is nearly the exact width of the waistband.

I bought the organzas and trim from the Common Thread and the satin from Fabricker.

I’m using silk thread to sew everything mostly because if I ever want to dye this dress to wear again later polyester thread won’t dye and since I’m already using silks or silk blends I figure silk thread would dye closest to the fabric color.

So far I’ve cut the yokes and stitched them at the shoulders and attached one side of the neck binding. I’m going to hand stitch the binding down in back by hand. I’ve done the same to the sleeves but I’ve yet to sew the sleeves to the yoke. I’m using a kind of mock flat fell seam for the sheer yoke and sleeves. It’s stronger than a French seam (which would have been really hard to sew) and it’s still pretty narrow and not very noticeable.

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I’ve sewn the darts in the bodice front and back and sewing the back bodice, waistband and skirt together. I finished the seam allowances with a zig zag stitch and plan to slip stitch/cat stitch the allowances to the organza in the waistband just to make it nice and clean.

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What’s nice about the organza was that I could iron on the dart legs without needed markers or chalk to mark them, then just fold the organza in place over the wrong side of the satin and sew darts like normal.

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I finished each pocket piece with a zig zag (that satin frays so bad!) and once I insert those I’ll sew the whole front shell together.

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(close up of zig zaging)

After I sew one side of the main dress together I’ll hand sew the beaded trim on.

I’ll stitch the yoke to the shell by hand and reinforce it if needed. The normal pattern instructions call for top stitching the shell to the yoke but I’m trying to avoid any unnecessary visible stitches. The waist band is tight enough that it serves as a waist stay so I’m not too worried about the weight of the dress on the yoke.

From there I’ll make and attach a lining if I want one and blind hem and insert and invisible zip.

Lots of hand sewing to come!

Comments (65) for post “A Special Macaron, Pt 1”

  • You’re going to be GORGEOUS! I love the trim. It’s really fantastic. You could totally skip the lining in lieu of a sexy little slip for after the wedding. πŸ˜‰

  • Ooo, what a nice surprise to hear about this at lunch and see the fabric on your blog today! It’s really wonderful!! I love that beaded trim. Can’t wait to see the finished version, Dixie!

  • I love handmade wedding dresses…this is going to be beautiful! I wore my moms wedding dress, that was altered a lot. I remember finishing up sewing the morning of my wedding! Looks like you are far more prepared than I was!

  • Oh wow! Congratulations on your up-coming nuptials. Your dress is going to be stunning – love the beaded waistband you have picked. Can’t wait to see the finished dress!!!

  • Yeaaa this is going to be such a unique wedding dress. Gotta love that! You’re smart to use a pattern you’ve made before so the process will be relatively smooth. Congrats on the engagement and enjoy making your dress!

  • Congrats!!! Sometimes I wish I knew how to sew when I got engaged so I could make a dress…. but let’s be real, I’m much too lazy for that! Lol πŸ˜‰ I am so pumped to see how this dress turns out – I love your first Macaron and I’m sure this will be ten times better, and ten times special-er πŸ˜‰ lol

  • Congratulations! So exciting! Can’t wait to see the finished dress. It’s going to be a beautiful macaron and a very unique and personal wedding dress.

  • Oooh how exciting! And I couldn’t agree more with you on the dress vs wedding thing. I’m getting hitched in April next year and I’m having the best fun thinking about wedding dresses. But the rest of the thing? Argh! But this is going to be gorgeous! So very excited for you πŸ™‚

  • Congratulations!!! Yay to a homemade wedding dress! It’s looking really pretty already, that trim is the piece de resistance. And can I just say that I LOVE the fact you’re inserting pockets into your wedding dress?! xx

  • Congratulations! This is going to be amazing. I’m toying with the idea of making my own wedding dress for next year, can’t wait to see your finished macaron!

  • Congratulations! This is going to be gorgeous – that trim is devine. Nice forward thinking on the silk thread too πŸ™‚

  • Oh wow, congratulations!!! When’s the wedding? I love that you’ve chosen this pattern and your fabric and beaded trim look divine! You’re going to look cute and stunning all in one…can’t wait to see pictures from your special day ;o)

  • congrats! this dress will be amazing! what a great choice in pattern too. can’t wait to see the final product, have fun making it!

  • Congratulations Dixie!! Such exciting news! The dress is going to be SO gorgeous – and I love the (very practical) idea of dyeing the dress after the wedding to get more wear out of it. Thanks for the sneak peeks!

  • congratulations Dixie! Did I miss somewhere that you got engaged? Regardless, you’re going to be one stunning bride! I was going to say that because of the weight of the dress on a sheer fabric like organza, you must reinforce the shoulder seams but then you added the part about the waist band being tight. Smart girl!

  • Congratulations and awesome! I recently got engaged and am going to make my wedding dress as well. I was even considering the Colette Macaron and did a search for a wedding dress versions of it, so I can’t wait to see how it turns out!

  • Super congrats!! I got married last year and was not too excited about the wedding hoopla either. Planning and making my dress definitely made the whole thing more special. Can’t wait to see it when it’s done!!

  • Congratulations! Way to just sneak that in there. And, the Macaron you are planning is going to make a beautiful wedding dress. That beaded belt is just perfect. Enjoy the process, and rock out in that dress!

  • Congrats, Dixie!
    Your Wedding Macaron already looks like it’ll turn out incredibly beautiful. πŸ™‚ I love the beaded waistband!

  • i kind of posted an instagram pic about it but that’s it. i’m bad about sharing important life events on here. this was the first time i really talked about it.

    you know i might take your advice and add some clear elastic to the shoulder seams just in case, ya know? couldn’t hurt.
    thanks so much maddie! πŸ™‚

  • thank you sallie! i’m a little scared about dying it (worried I might mess it up or the color will be bad) but i won’t have to worry about that for awhile.

  • thanks! i’m thinking before the end of the year. i know that sounds soon but we’re doing something really small, immediate family, just dinner at a restaurant, no reception so there’s not much to plan. we’ve been together for a long time so waiting for a year to have a wedding isn’t very exciting for me. πŸ˜‰

  • Congratulations! I made my wedding dress and all of the accoutrements to go with it with the exceptions of my shoes and jewellery. Have fun with it. It’s such a special garment to make.

  • Well, I think that sounds just perfect and I wish you well in organising it all and of course, in enjoying the special day ;o)

  • Congratulations! You’re definitely being a lot more practical with your dress than I was with mine – it took nearly every bit of 12 yds of silk taffeta (plus lots of other stuff you don’t see) and almost 6 months for me to make! This is going to be so very charming, I can just tell. Have you let the folks at Colette Patterns know about this? I bet they’d be thrilled to hear about a Wedding Macaron! And good luck with all that handsewing (don’t I know about that, lol)

  • Congratulation Dixie!! Thats fantastic news. My wedding is next Sunday I can’t believe how quick it has come. I am so excited to see your Wedding Macaron it looks like its already coming together beautifully! Can’t wait to see the pics. Good luck with all of the planning I know how stressful it can get but hopefully you will enjoy every minute of it. xx

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