The Lily Gown – Skirt Design

I have decided on a skirt style and a pattern. It will, actually be a five panel skirt with darts in the back. Yes I know that a five panel skirt is not traditional. Usually, they come in pairs of two (a four panel skirt, a six panel, or in larger gowns even a 16 panel skirt). So yes, I am aware that an odd number of panels is an odd choice.

But it is in service as a goal and its to replicate volume in the back without ending up with all of the underpinnings that would be needed for a full gown version. If we look at the gown being worn, you can see a bustle in the back.

Image from Museum at FIT

That makes a folded back that gives the skirt volume, and smooth silhouette in the front. I will be using the fifth panel to replicate this shaping without having too large of panels that I need to cut. The skirt is plus sized to fit me, and the fabric that I have only has so much width so this fifth panel makes the most sense here to avoid horizontal seams on the garment or too much cabbage.

Regardless now that is has been chosen, I have the ability to make a working steps list for this project and its designed to be as all encompassing as possible.

  1. Choose fabric
  2. Choose skirt type
  3. Reach out to vendors about embroidery work
  4. Place order for embroidery work
  5. Draft pattern*
  6. Cut velvet pieces
  7. Cut lining pieces
  8. Sew skirt with basting stitches
  9. Check fit
  10. Sew proper seams
  11. Add zipper to back seam
  12. Fold rear darts for bustle and stitch them into place
  13. Do second fit test
  14. Sew finish seams on bottom and top as needed
  15. Fell seam overage on vertical seams (I like the neatness of this and its helpful with hand stitches)
  16. Stitch on appliques in the designed positions
  17. Assess final garment, make changes (as additional stitches for solidity wherever I feel like the applique are not laying as nicely as I would like) as needed

So that’s the general plan for making the skirt based on the Lily Dress.

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