Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie permoda: Finished gown: Vogue #2890

Debbie and Bellville Sassoon’s Vogue #2890

Vogue #2890 – an elegant Bellville Sassoon design.

So Debbie Permoda was a student at Tchad for a while.  She needed an evening gown to wear when she gave up her title as Mrs. Indiana and came to us with the chiffon confection that Bellville Sassoon has had in the Vogue pattern book for years.

She wanted a striking red satin and chiffon dress that would hold up as both pageant wear and as a well-made evening gown.

Let’s get started.

First off, sorry about the darkness in some of the photos.  Debbie was burning the midnight oil more than once on this project and we didn’t always get the lighting right at 12:30 am.

The two most difficult things with this project were probably getting the ruching balanced into the seams along the front and top.  After that, it was the long sad song that we all sing as we set silk chiffon hems by hand.   And we sing it profoundly, especially in cases like this. We wrote about how she balanced the ruching over on this post.

We modified the design in three ways:

1. We did not include the silk flowers down the front.  Debbie went to the wholesale jewelry warehouse and bought rhinestone broaches to use if it needed last-minute sparkle.

Vogue #2890 with shawl at tchad sewing workrooms chicago
With shawl and rhinestone closures

2. We gave the back of the inner corset and self fabric two full length seams instead of just darting it.  Both times we have had this particular pattern in class the back has always been too boxy for the look we like best.  So you may find yourself adding darts or seams in the back to shape it more if they are busty or have a smaller than average waist.

Back of Vogue #2890 belleville sassoon at tchad workroom sewing classes
You can see that the back as designed and cut has too much fullness for a fitted bodice…

 

Back of Vogue #2890 belleville sassoon after alterations and recutting at tchad workroom sewing classes
Back of Vogue #2890 belleville sassoon after alterations and recutting…

 

Tchad Recut of back of V2890 with debbie permoda holding the shape
Recut of back of V2890…

 

Recut v2890 back with seams taking in excess.

3. Instead of using one invisible zipper for all of the layers on the left side, we included a satin facing and closed the corset layer with a heavier metal separating zipper.  This is a nice touch that we like to put into very fitted gowns, especially if they are strapless.  It adds a bit to the time it takes for the gown to come together, but it is well worth the effort and engineering.

Tchad workrooms helped shape inner corset v 2890 with more structure for sewing classes
Side view inner corset v 2890 with more structure before pressing. At this stage the skirt is pinned on more for modesty than anything else.

We bound the lower edge of the corset with matching satin bias strip and then attached the lining to the outside of corset in a lapped seam to help keep it flat and avoid bulk. This was basted and then slipstitched into place and the rest of the dress was draped and positioned over this fully finished inner construction.

 

Back corset view Vogue #2890 with more shape and structure at tchad sewing workrooms in chicago
Back corset view Vogue #2890 with more shape and structure (again with modesty lining).

 

And with the corset finished and fitted, the linings set, and the shape right, we went on to basting together the draped skirt sections.

Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie's progress: vogue #2890
Fine-tuning the gathers at the waistline so that the vertical seams fall inside the folds of the drape.

…And… On to the final fittings:

Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie's final fitting: bust and praying for completion: vogue #2890
Debbie prays for this to be finished. Just kidding. You never know what kind of artifacts you’ll find in a picture up here. This probably came from Madonna’s yard sale when she gave up on the “Like A Prayer” look.

 

Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie's final fitting: corset and facings vogue #2890
Dealing with back facing and corset lining. If you look at the seam on the left, you can see there is a bit of a fold created.  In sheer bias cut silks you may have to manipulate these out rather than relying on the pattern as-cut itself.  Every fabric is different here and if you just plow into it you may end up with a surprise like this.

 

Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie's final fitting: corset and facings vogue #2890
Debbie’s final fitting at the workroom before we closed up the linings.

 

Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie's final fitting: vogue #2890
Almost there! Almost!

 

Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie's progress: vogue #2890
Final draped front and skit together, now time for the sewing.

 

Sewing classes in chicago: Tchad: Debbie's final fitting: testing drape and folds of skirt: vogue #2890
Last chance to change drape of skirt at final fitting.

This dress will go nowhere. Well, it will go anywhere that can handle it, but it won’t slip or pull or slide is what we’re saying here.  We’d say it allows you to breathe easy, but you won’t be breathing quite as deeply as you’d like as much in this, so we’ll lean towards saying it will give you peace of mind instead.

If you look closely, you can see how the sweep of the silk points toward the outer high hip. This wasn't working in the pattern, so had to be engineered with a separate panel cut into the side drape and hidden in the folds.
If you look closely, you can see how the sweep of the silk points toward the outer high hip. This wasn’t working in the pattern, so had to be engineered with a separate panel cut into the side drape and hidden in the folds.

Detail of top of dress. Notice how the sheer has been eased over the curve of the under layers to maintain some texture - it isn't just stretched.
Detail of top of dress. Notice how the sheer has been eased over the curve of the under layers to maintain some texture – it isn’t just stretched.

 

When you start to unzip the side you can see some of the inner construction that we built in as an extra support system.
When you start to unzip the side you can see some of the inner construction that we built in as an extra support system.

 

 

 

 

With invisible dress zipper entirely down. Even if the failure of the invisible zipper is catastrophic, the dress will stay up and your delicate modesty will be maintained. There is a light slipstitch anchoring the lining of the dress to the face of the drill corset to keep things tidy.
With invisible dress zipper entirely down. Even if the failure of the invisible zipper is catastrophic, the dress will stay up and your delicate modesty will be maintained. There is a light slipstitch anchoring the lining of the dress to the face of the drill corset to keep things tidy.

 

Even with the inner corset zipper more than halfway down the dress doesn't Fall or fail because of the structure through the bust and the fit through the waist. Properly fitting garments are stable even when they are exposing or failing.
Even with the inner corset zipper more than halfway down the dress doesn’t fall or fail because of the structure through the bust and the fit through the waist. Properly fitting garments are stable even when they are exposing or failing.

 

And then, of course, it fails only when the zipper is entirely down. If you look closely, you can see the construction details of the layers. This is our preferred way to build any corseted dress or gown, but especially a strapless one.
And then, of course, it fails only when the zipper is entirely down. If you look closely, you can see the construction details of the layers. This is our preferred way to build any corseted dress or gown, but especially a strapless one.

And since its construction, it has been worn by a number of women in the pageant world.  This dress was built to last in a way that you almost never see unless you are making it yourself.

You can read about Vogue #2890 on Pattern Review here.

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