This is the third post in my series on my Handmaid’s Tale cosplay. See Why The Handmaid’s Tale and Researching the Costume for more details.
To make my cosplay, I started with the Christine Haynes Emery dress pattern and then made a list of things that needed to be changed.
First up was lengthening the skirt to the floor. This was relatively easy but I would suggest not following the hip curve if you do this yourself. You need A LOT less room in hem circumference than you think you do. Mine puffs out funny (image below) because I made it too wide at the bottom.
Second was reshaping neckline. Oh boy was this one more complicated than I thought! For my first attempt, I converted my v-neck pattern piece to a high round neck and then drafted facing pieces.
Once I attached this, I realized that it was WAY too high at the center front. I felt like I was suffocating! I marked where I wanted the neckline to hit, ripped out the facing, and cut down the neckline. Then I redrafted the facing with several key differences.
1 piece for the front vs. 2 pieces. I realized that the neckline needed more stability and so I drafted the piece to be all in one.
I extended the front piece by 3 inches. Moving the neckline down necessitated 1 inch, but I decided I wanted another inch to be ‘open’ at the neckline. The final inch was because I realized it need a LOT more support under the center front point. I also interfaced the facing to give it stability.
I sewed on the new facing, clipped into the curves, trimmed seam allowances then cut down the center front. Cutting into your fabric is ALWAYS terrifying. For more details about creating a ‘yoke’ like facing, see the True Bias tutorial for her Colfax dress. The concept is the same.
Next I constructed the front and back ‘modesty’ flaps. These were 3 inches shorter than the width of my front and back skirt pieces. I hemmed both sides of the flaps and then pinned them to the skirt pieces.
Next up my series is how I made the obi belt!
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