Q: Please please help me figure out what pattern to use to make this dress! I've been obsessing over it for my wedding dress, but I haven't found just the right pattern, and I'm scared of sewing with lace!
A: Hi Katie, it's so exciting to be making your own wedding dress. =). I'm sure it'll be beautiful! Don't be scared of sewing on the lace, but make sure you cut carefully and you'll be fine.
It looks like a lace overdress (layer) over a matching ivory underdress, probably attached at the waist so it's only one dress. I can't quite tell but it almost looks like the lace has scallops around the neck and armholes; it may have been woven like that for the manufacturer, in each size. We can't replicate that at home!
You can either give the lace a very tiny hem, very carefully!, or I would either use a matching lace sewn to the overdress and topstitched or use the scalloped border of the lace cut off and used as if it were lace yardage. Although, the skirt looks like a circle skirt so they weren't able to even use the lace edge border there. If you made it gathered or pleated, you could use the border as the hem.
As for patterns, you could use something like Simplicity 1873 for the lace overdress...
...and rather than cut out a lining or facing, turn under the edges of the lace. Again, very carefully!! That's where it might be tricky, so go really slowly. Actually, it would look best if you did it by hand. Turn it under 1/4" then another 1/4" and do a whipstitch with tiny stitches on the outside.
The underdress you could make with the same pattern, but with much narrower straps, so that you know the straps line up right. Or, you could use a pattern like Simplicity 4531 (I think it's out of print but there must be something similar or one for sale online).
Then, of course, add the satin belt!
It's definitely a unique project but I hope that was helpful. Readers, what insights do you have for Katie?? Have you ever made anything like this before? Any other ideas?