Wedding Dress Saga: Underlining, lining, lace edge finishing, ahh!

Help!

This post is just a quick shout out to the very intelligent sewing enthusiasts over at sewing.patternreview.co (and Liz! if you care to chime in). I’m somewhat stuck and stumped on how to proceed with the see-through lace portion of the back of this dress.

Here (above) is what the front looks like thus far. The lace is underlined in the handkerchief linen. I’ve basted on some trim. The midriff piece (with the pointy center) is underlined with the linen and also has a layer of cotton broadcloth behind that for stability. I went to my sewing teacher to ask about how to interface the waist, and she pointed out that it didn’t have to be organza or hair canvas – any fabric which felt right could work. What a smart lady. Cotton broadcloth seemed just the right weight.

Here are the pieces for the back.

Again, there’s a separate sort of waistband piece, which aligns at the sides with the midriff piece above. It is underlined with both linen and broadcloth, just like the front. The upper back piece, however, is supposed to be see-through. Since the lace is rather floppy on its own, I thought I should underline it with silk organza (on the right in the photo). That accomplished, I’m not sure how all this is going to work with the lining I intended to make out of cotton batiste.
Do I just make a lining for the front pieces and the back waist band piece? How, then, would I finish the edges of the upper back made of lace? I can see how the edges at the shoulder and the waist could be tucked inside the batiste lining, but what about the armhole edges and the V opening down the back? Do I make bias binding for that part? Or should I make a full bodice lining out of batiste, but substitute organza for the upper back pieces? In that case, I suppose I would insert the lining like normal… would that work? I think the first way makes more sense, but if someone else has dealt with a back like this I would love to hear how you did it!
The only thing I’ve found online for comparison so far, is Julia Bobbin’s wedding salsa dress:

The basic elements of her dress look quite similar to the one I’m making – I’m going to email pester her. But in the meantime, I would welcome any and all advice!

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One comment

  1. I had a sheer upper back bodice on the wedding dress that I made, also lace underlined with organza. After doing a couple of samples with scraps, I settled on just turning under a narrow hem after basting the organza and lace together, and finishing by hand. My lace was a lot more open and netted than yours is, though.

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