Inspired by Rhonda, I purchased this fabric from Joann's. Rhonda shortened hers a bit and used some lovely ribbon for straps. I knew that the maxi-length wouldn't work for me; I know I would trip on a long dress, just going up the stairs. LOL Also, I wanted a little more coverage at the top, so I thought I could use the piece cut off from shortening the dress above the border to make a slightly fluttery almost-cap "sleeve." (What's that called?)
Next, I trimmed the bottom edge, slightly curving the back up so that the center back would be about 1 in. shorter than the front—to allow for (ahem) front body contours, which take up more fabric than my (lack of) back body contours. Please note the level hemline. Thank you.
So then I had this nice piece of fabric to make the fluttery almost-cap sleeves. My first attempt was a failure; I don’t even remember what I was thinking. So, with not too much fabric left, I got out my Sure-Fit Designs bodice front and back blueprints. I aligned the front and back shoulder seams and from that, created a pattern piece as long and wide as I could, flaring it out at the center (the part that would go over my shoulder). I serged the outer and inner curved edges, pressed under and stitched to finish them.
Then I tried on the sundress, and by trial and error, pinned the sleeves to the bottom of the top ruffle in the front and back until I was happy with the angle and fit. It took me about 100 tries, okay maybe 50. At least 25. I then trimmed and serged the edges and stitched them, right side of the sleeve to wrong side of the sundress, stretching the elastic of the sundress at the same time. I then hand-stitched the top of the blue ruffle to the sleeves.
I know we (seamstresses ~ sewers ~ sewists ~ stitchers ~ sewing artisans) like to see everything up close and personal, inside and out. Here's a closeup of the outside of the top, where the sleeve is attached to the ruffle.
Here's the center back French seam.
Are you still making summer clothes (for this year)? Or, if you're "down under," for your upcoming summer?
Blessings and peace...