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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Backless Halter Maxi DIY

This last week I've went a little crazy in my sewing room whipping up all sorts of creations for my upcoming girls trip to Vegas for Brianna's 30th birthday!
I'm very excited that I'm going to be able to post tutorials for most of those projects, so in the next few weeks look forward to lots of fast and fashionable sewing projects here!
The first project is this backless halter maxi dress which is made from a knit fabric that you can whip up in about an hour.  I'll likely use this dress as a bikini cover-up as we hang out pool side.

Materials and Supplies
-Knit Fabric (probably a couple yards)
-Knit Lining Fabric (optional)
-Thread to Match
-Sewing Machine
-Ruler/Measuring Tape

*This will work best if you sew with a slight zig-zag or other stretch stitch and a ball point needle*
Measure from your waist line around your neck back to your waist.
1.  Cut out a piece of fabric 2" shorter than this measurement (it will stretch a bit to make up for the 2") by 14" wide (or more if you want the front section to be wider than 7", but you don't want to make it too wide that there's too much bulk around the neck...there's another option for making the overlap in the front wider in step 6).
2.  Sew this piece of fabric into a long tube.  As you can see below I made my tube so the front half was the dress fabric and the other my lining fabric, this is because I knew I wouldn't have enough fabric to make it the full 14" wide.
3.  Cut out a price of fabric for the skirt that measures the width of your hips by the length of your dress from the waist down (I made mine a bit longer and then hemmed it to the length I wanted when I was finished).
4.  Sew into a tube that will become the skirt of the dress.  You might want to sew in the top of the skirt slightly smaller so that the skirt doesn't drape too low.
5.  Lay out the skirt so that the seam you sewed is at the middle back.  Mark the center front of the skirt with a pin.  Pin on both sides of that mark 3.5" over to equal 7"(or more if you are making the front section wider, just make sure you measure equal distances on each side from the center).
6.  Lay the first tube you sewed flat and drape it around into a U shape lining up the bottom edges on top of each other.  If you want to make the front section wider you can cross the fabric over further so that it over laps on both sides.
7.  Pin the bottom edges onto the top of the skirt tube upside down facing right sides together.  Matching up the edges with the outer pins from step 5.  Sew the top of the dress to the skirt.  
8.  At this point I would recommend sewing a lining for the dress (no one wants a see through dress) by making a tube the same as the skirt of the dress but shorter (I made mine mini length because I didn't want the dress to be too hot in the summer).
9.  Sew the lining tube onto the dress by sandwiching the top piece between the lining of the skirt and the skirt.  (see picture below)
If you don't make a lining, just turn down and sew the top edge of the skirt.
10.  Flip everything the right sides out so that the lining goes down into the skirt.
Cut two pieces of fabric 8" wide by about 20" long (or whatever length you need to make a tie).  Fold them in half length wise and sew around one long and short edge.  Flip right side out and you should have two bands.
11.  Pin the bands on the outside of each side of the top and sew in place.  Make sure that you measure both sides first to make sure that you have the placement the same on each side.
12.  Hem the skirt...and you're done!
(Yes, it's probably time to clean up my sewing/crafting area!)

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