Tools and Materials:
- Strawberry tule
- Tulle lining
- Lining Fabric
- Sewing Machine
- Rotary cutter
I love bright colors and fun fabrics! When I saw Lirika Matoshi’s strawberry dress I knew I had to have it. I came up with an idea that would get me the dress without breaking the bank! If you are looking for the perfect blend of girly and ladylike then this dress is the one you’ve been searching for! The strawberries and tulle create the ultimate summer look! Follow my step-by-step tutorial and learn how to redesign this designer dress to make a super cute strawberry dress from your home!
For this project I decided to use fabric I had in the house, to create a muslin mockup. I used slopers to create my pattern pieces, adding some extra depth to the front neckline. I also created draping by adding extra wide sections to my bodice front. A lot of designers use muslin mockups before they create their pieces to make sure the patterns and stylings work. I had to make a few changes to my pattern pieces and that’s why a muslin is such a great tip for designing!
Once I had the perfect patterns I was ready to start cutting! Working with tulle meant I would need a fabric lining and I chose this matching, nude pink color for the bodice lining. Once my lining pieces were cut, I cut the bodice patterns in the strawberry tulle material and then in the tulle lining. A great tip is to use a rotary cutter and cutting mat. They were a lifesaver when cutting the tulle!
I then cut an extra wide piece from the strawberry tulle for the draping on the front bodice. The extra fabric will be gathered to create the gorgeous drapes in the dress.
I layered the three bodice fabrics and pinned them together. Since the front and back bodice has darts that create an amazing fitted look, I used my pattern pieces to trace the dart lines onto the bodice pieces. I then headed over to my sewing machine and basted all four bodice pieces to keep the fabrics from shifting. While I was at my machine, I added a basting seam to my draping pieces at the shoulder and at the bottom waistline.
I always like to do two lines of basting so I made sure to tie the ends of the front and back threads together to make gathering the tulle easier!
Before I could start assembling the gorgeous bodice I sewed the darts into the back and front pieces. The darts give the dress an amazing fitted style that I just adore!
I pinned my bodice pieces to a mannequin and started working on the draping of the gathered tulle pieces. Once the draping was in place, I pinned the tulle pieces to my front bodice pieces and sewed them together.
To create the perfect circle skirt pattern, I used my pencil skirt sloper, slashed it, taped the tops together, and spread it. I then cut out the lining using this pattern. I used the same fabric to cut out a second lining for the bodice.
I am all about reusing! To create padding for the dress, I cut the padding from an old bra and pinned it onto the bodice lining. I then used a zig-zag stitch to attach it to the inside lining. I went ahead and sewed the edges of the bodice together without attaching this inner lining.
Another element of this dress that I just love are the ruffles. To create these, I took the plain tulle, folded it in half, and basted it along the top so that I could gather it to create the ruffles later.
I then used more tulle and folded it over twice to create a ribbon. I sewed along the side, turned it right side out, and had the perfect tulle ribbon for bows! I then gathered the ruffles on my neck and shoulder pieces which would add a stunning finish to this dress!
With my ruffles at the ready, I sandwiched them in between the inner bodice lining and the bodice along the front v neckline and sewed it into place.
To make these awesome sleeves I sandwiched the ruffles between a piece of strawberry tulle and a piece of plain tulle. Once the ruffle was sewed in, I turned the fabric right side out and added an additional seam for the elastic. Before adding the elastic, I basted the top of the sleeve which I would gather, later on, to create a poofy style. I inserted the elastic into the sleeve and once it was in I sewed the underside of my sleeves together.
I then pinned the sleeves onto the bodice piece, gathering the basting as I pinned. Once the sleeves were in place, I sewed them on. I pinned the bodice onto my mannequin to check that everything was in place and added a panel of tulle to the deep v.
I then took the circle skirt lining and pinned and sewed it onto the inner lining of my bodice at the waistline.
With the skirt lining sewed on, I cut two pieces from the strawberry tule to use for my skirt. I decided to use the salvageable edge of the tule for the top of my skirt so that sequins wouldn’t interfere with sewing. I then cut the exact same pieces from my plain tulle fabric.
I basted the two layers of tulle along the top and added another basting stitch which would then become my gather.
Using the plain tulle, which I cut to the width of the skirt, I used a basting stitch to gather the fabric. I then pinned the gathered tulle only onto the bottom of my strawberry tulle skirt section to create that gorgeous ruffled finish.
Once the ruffles were added, I gathered the waistline of the skirt. I then pinned the skirt onto the bodice of my dress and sewed it on. I flipped the skirt over and was so excited to catch a glimpse of my almost ready strawberry dress!
To give my dress the perfect finish I added my two tulle ribbons and attached the light pink invisible zipper to the back.
I am seriously obsessed with this design! Where would you wear this stunning dress? Let me know in the comments below!
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