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Tutorial 29. Steaming and Pressing the Dress on the Dress-Form.

Tutorial 29. Steaming and Pressing the Dress on the Dress-Form.

I have put the dress on the dress-form to press and steam it.

Steaming is often used to give proper shape to garments. You can steam your dress right on the dress-form at any work stage or before the fitting if you have a good steam generator iron. It is fast and easy.

Professionals often steam an already finished garment and leave it for a few hours or overnight to dry and let the shape set properly.

Of course, minor tucks and creases were formed on the dress when I was joining the face with the lining, but I can easily remove them now by steaming the entire dress from top to bottom right on the dress-form. 

The effect is particularly noticeable on the bodice. All wrinkles, creases, and pin marks simply disappear.

By the way, a pressing cushion is a very handy tool for removing minor folds and wrinkles. 

There is a small air bubble in the middle of the under-bust line where I made a dart on the lining. If you don't plan to decorate this area and want to ensure good fitting, I recommend you should place a piece of fusible webbing between the face and the lining and fuse them together. As for me, I have nothing to worry about because I will certainly decorate this part of the dress.

You can clearly see the result if you examine the bodice in the pictures below.

Before steaming...

After steaming...

The preliminary pressing is over. It is best not to touch the dress for a couple of hours. Let it dry properly.

And now it is time to work on the mesh top (overlay for the bodice).

There is a very important thing you must take into account before we start. The mesh top is supposed to be put over the dress. And this means I need to cut it based on the measurements of the sewn dress and not my client's measurements. Dome-shaped cups, bones, eased-in areas – all this has affected the initial measurements taken off my client and made the dimensions of the dress a little different.

This is why I need to take certain measurements off the garment before cutting the mesh top. 

I will take half measurements to make it easier.

Here is what I need to know:

- Bust Width Front,

- Under-Bust Width Front,

- Waist Width Front,

- Waist Width Back,

- Stomach Width Front,

- Stomach Width Back.

Let us focus on the stomach width measurements for a moment.

They will be taken 7cm below the waistline.  At first, I thought it would be beautiful if the tulle skirt started 10-12cm below the waistline. But now, after examining the finished base of the dress, I believe it will look a lot better with the tulle skirt positioned higher (6cm below the waistline) and the mesh top reaching 7cm below the waistline.

This explains why cutting the mesh top involves measuring Stomach Width Front and Stomach Width Back 7cm below the waistline. I tie a cord around the dress 7cm below the waistline.

What concerns the back half of the dress, I will only measure Waist Width Back and Stomach Width Back 7cm below the waistline because the low back neckline makes Bust Circumference and Under-Bust Circumference irrelevant.

In addition, I need to account for the fact that the under-bust line runs 10cm above the waistline on the dress when I start adjusting the initial pattern of the mesh top.   

I will also need to account for the adjusted length of the tulle skirt as compared to the main skirt because the tulle skirt will start 6cm below the waistline instead and not 10-12cm as was planned before.

All measurements taken off the dress while on the dress-form will be put in the table.

I will also print out the original pattern, measure it, and record all values.

If you find it hard to obtain proper measurements of your printed out initial pattern, then I strongly recommend you sew a mock-up and measure it afterwards the same way you did with the initial pattern of the main dress.

The pictures below demonstrate the process of taking measurements off the dress.

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