The original design was scanned from my Visual Diary (below) and turned into a production sketch ready for the pattern making process. The dress is sketched up in three blocked colours of Navy, Red and Yellow. Working through the production sketch will always help you finalise all the design details, including how you might get into the dress. ;) In working the design idea through to the back of the dress, I've continued the waist detail around at an angle, to ensure design continuity for the entire dress.
The pattern development below is based on my fitted dress block available here (Womens Fitted Dress Block) for you to download. :) In the Pattern Plan I have decided that the red diagonal panel at the waist, with the drape should be in one piece (no side seam) so the tucks can be secured softy at the side seam, as in the original sketch.
- A boat neckline that starts at the mid-shoulder point.
- An extended cap sleeve that just covers the shoulder. In this diagram I have extended the shoulder line by 4-5cm (1⅝"-2"), and shaped it slightly to follow the line of the shoulder joint.
- Then work on the main design feature at the waist, starting at the back, right underarm and working through to the front waistline.
- Mark in drape lines where you would like the soft waist tucks at the waist to be located.
- Draw in the front bodice panel lines, equally either side of the centre front line.
- Continue the front right panel line through to the front, right hip level at an angle.
- For the length of the dress I've decided to add 5cm (2") beyond the knee level.
- Taper the side seams of the front and back dress (2.5cm or 1" each side) at the hemline level. Draw a line from zero at the hip level, through to the tapered position at the hemline.
- Draw in the left side panel seam from the waist through to the hemline.
- Then mark in the drape lines for the tucks in the front dress, from the waist feature through to the hemline.
- In this design I've decided to use a centre back seam for the zipper. To compensate for tapering the side seams, I will add a centre back vent at the hemline for ease of walking.
In the diagram above, I've colour coded each of the parts of the pattern to make it clear where the seams are and how this garment comes together. Each of the coloured areas is a separate pattern piece, with the exception of the draped waist detail.
This is how the fabric (pattern) pieces would look cut out in the three different colours. Do be aware that the grain will change on each pattern piece according to how they need to behave. Let me know if you have any questions about this design and pattern making instructions please feel free to leave a comment below.