Since you have already made a garment with kimono sleeves you should choose for this dress a pattern with set-in sleeves. This will give you a new problem in garment construction. Your success in making this dress will depend upon how carefully you plan before beginning to sew. No matter how beautifully the sewing is done, the dress will not be a success unless it is made of the right material and according to the right design. If this is your first dress, it will be better for you to use cotton material which is inexpensive and easy to work with.
How to Plan Your Dress. - What points can you recall from the chapters "How to Dress in Good Taste" and "Fabrics that We Use Every Day" that will help you to plan your dress wisely? Most people find it helpful to study fashion magazines and to do window shopping when they are planning a dress. By window shopping we mean examining the dresses displayed in shop windows in order to get ideas for making a dress. Do you see why this will be helpful? Before making your decision about the design for your dress answer the following questions:
1. Does the design have good proportion of parts?
2. Does it have good line harmony?
3. Will it be becoming to me?
Before you buy the material for your dress it will be a good plan for you to get some samples and test them according to the textile tests which you learned. You will wish to know the following things:
1. Will it fade?
2. Will it wear well?
3. Will it launder well?
4. Does it have the appearance and feeling of being of good quality? At the next class meeting be prepared to report to the class what design you mean to use, what color and what kind of material. You should have a sketch or a picture of the design and a sample of the material. Exchange the pictures and samples for your dress with your neighbor. Ask her to criticize the plan according to the questions asked above. After you have the approval of your mother and teacher for the plan of your dress, you are ready to purchase your pattern and your material.
Study of Pattern. - I f you study the following pictures and descriptions carefully you will be able to understand and use your pattern correctly. Study the three pictures in Fig. 91 and find out in how many ways this type of garment differs from the kimono type of garment.
There are certain differences between front and back in this type of pattern, as shown in Fig. 92, that will help you to tell them apart. The pattern is cut wider across the chest for the front than for the back. Why do you think this necessary? Notice also the difference between the front and the back pattern in the curve at the neck. The back has a very slight curve, and the front is much more hollowed out. How would your dress look if you happened to put the deep curve on the back and the slight curve on the front piece? There is the same difference in the curve of the armhole on the front and back. More curve is necessary on the front than on the back. You can see why this is necessary if you feel around the armhole of a dress that you are wearing.
Sleeves. - In the kimono type of garment the sleeve and body of the dress are cut in one piece. The kimono style of sleeve falls smoothly over the top of the shoulder. Under the arm the cloth necessarily falls into folds, as shown in Picture 1 of Fig. 93. Because of these folds this type of sleeve is particularly well suited to soft materials. The set-in sleeve as shown in Picture 2 fits smoothly into an armhole and does not crush into folds under the arm.
Picture 1 in Fig. 94 shows how the top of a sleeve is shaped to fit the armhole. It is more hollowed out in front than in the back in order to fit the armhole. In some sleeve patterns the difference in the curve at the front and back is very slight. For this reason it is very important to mark the notches as shown on the pattern when you cut out your dress. Picture 2 in Fig. 94 shows the sleeve after it has been opened out. Picture 3 shows a sleeve that has a very slight difference in the curve on the front and the back. Fold your sleeve pattern together to see what difference there is in the curves.
Collar Patterns. - Some collars lie flat and some roll up around the neck. The shape of the neck line in the collar determines whether it lies flat or rolls around the neck. Examine the pictures in Fig. 95 and you can see how this happens. Does the collar with the most curved neckline lie flat or roll around the neck? If your dress has a collar, which style pattern shown in Fig. 95 was used to cut it? How can you tell?
An Experiment with Patterns. - Try cutting free-hand patterns for different kinds of collars. Make them from newspaper or wrapping paper and fit them on your neighbor. Make some that roll and some that lie flat.