It's not bedsheets anymore!
Ta Da!There's still quite a bit of work to do, but considering I've only been working on it in the evenings since Saturday, I'm feeling pretty good about it.
I still need to attach the lace sleeves (they're just pinned to the dress form at the moment) and figure out how I want to finished the top edge of the lace.
I've got some extra lace and I was thinking of trimming out some of those vertical rows of flowers and vines and using that to edge the bodice...not sure about that yet though. I also have all the lace and appliques from my aunt's dismantled wedding dress that I should pull out and see if I can use.
The pleats on the back are just basted across the top right now and haven't been steamed into shape over the crinoline yet, but soon!
I knew I was going to have to baste the pleat in the front to make sure that the edges touched when the seam was sewn so it looked closed and nice. Last night as I was hefting the skirt (which is taking on some impressive weight already) around the room, I had an epiphany. The skirt has a 5/8" seam allowance at the top, so I just needed to sew the pleat closed for 3/4 of an inch to ensure that the pleat laid the way I wanted. Duh!
Granted, when I cut out the skirt pieces, I knew this would happen, but I'm still really pleased with the effect of the slubs at the side seam of the skirt. You won't be able to see much of the horizontal slubbing detail on the bodice since it will be covered by lace, but you'll see it all on the skirt. The slubs run parallel to the floor at the skirt front and back and meet in a very pleasant V shape down the entire side seam.
Finally got the crinoline under there to give this huge honkin' skirt some much needed shape. Please excuse the crumpliness of the skirt and the drag lines at the waist. My poor little dress form has trouble supporting this much weight and is coming apart at the waist, so every time I got the skirt pinned and pretty the dress form would sink a little and wonk everything up. Oh well. Better drag lines on the dress form than actually on me.
Still working on the bodices, which are still not connected to the skirt, or boned, or bust cupped, or lined, or even have all the boning channels they need. When the bodice is actually attached to the skirt and not just folded under at the bottom (adding that charming extra width at the waist that you see here) the front will have a very slight basque which I originally didn't want but have grown very fond of. Don't mind the bra straps, the dress form is in the process of being padded out for a customer's jacket and I didn't feel like taking the bra off, since I needed something in there to fill out the bodice anyway.
My poor little dress form just gets shorter and stumpier looking the more layers I add. I need to figure out how to get inside her to tighten her waist bolts. Again, don't mind how the waist just seems to get bigger and bigger. I added extra length when cutting out the lace, as a just in case and then needed to fold it up out of the way. As soon as I figure out how I'm going to finish the top edge of the lace, it will stop looking so hack and slash and will acquire a pleasing curve.