We have reached the final post for the Butterick Pattern 3350 sew along! Are y’all ready to finish this dress?! This is the post where we do the big reveal, not only of the dress itself, but also of my mistakes – there were definitely some mistakes – and I want you to know that despite those mistakes, my daughter and I love this dress! I hope you will be as happy with yours as we are. Let’s get right to it!
The dreaded zipper installation!
On page 3 of your instructions we begin installing the zipper. I found their explanation a little unclear but once I figured it out it made perfect sense.
First, if you are doing the size 4 dress, like I did (or smaller, I suppose), you will need to shorten the zipper. I have always done this by simply hand-sewing back and forth over the point on the zipper teeth where I want the zipper to stop but for this one, in order to do it quickly, I placed it on the sewing machine and just did a zigzag stitch over my desired stopping point. You can determine your stopping point by measuring the zipper against the opening at the back of the dress. Here is my new stopping point. Once you sew your new stopping point just cut off the zipper below it leaving about a half inch (that hadn’t happened yet in this pic so it is not shown):
Next, with the lining pulled out of the way, and right sides together, you need to baste the zipper opening shut and then press the seam open. It should look like this:
Now, here is what I did – which is slightly different than the instructions in step C. Step C tells you to open the zipper and baste it down on one side. I guess I did a cheaters version of zipper installation that comes from me applying so many zippers to bags and pouches that it just felt more comfortable. I used fabric glue to temporarily hold the zipper in place over the seam and using a zipper foot, stitched down each side. Here is the pic of me putting the zipper in place:
If you need some more encouragement and detailed instructions for sewing a zipper, I found this video incredibly helpful (though, she doesn’t deal with the lining the way we will have to, but for a newbie this really helps with visualizing what should happen with the zipper).
Once the zipper is in, remove the basting you originally did to close the zipper opening (carefully) with a seam ripper and you should have a working zipper!
Now to the lining.
I confess to something. The last dress I made did not have a lining. I was so confused as to how this would work. Nothing seemed to make sense until I called my sister-in-law and realized – oh – you have to hand-sew the lining in. Now it makes sense. I wasn’t expecting to have to do any hand-sewing but I am glad I did because I learned a valuable lesson.
First, I got to practice my slip stitch, which I had only done for a pillow before. If you don’t know how to slip stitch, go ahead and check out this video. It is helpful.
So the idea is – those folded sides and bottom of the lining that you pressed earlier – you are going to make sure they are folded in and you are going to use a slip stitch to attach the lining to each side of the zipper as well as the waist seam – thus covering the ugly gathering area there and making the inside zipper area look (and feel) nice and neat. Here is what mine looked like at the waist (the seam allowance is up under that folded lining edge):
And here it is attached to one of the zipper sides:
Y’all here is where I confess one of my mistakes to you. I sewed the lining way too close to the zipper teeth. Make sure your stitches are clearing the teeth. It works (whew) but let’s just say the zipper is not a smooth up and down.
Okay, now hem the bottom of your skirt. I cheated a bit for time’s sake here, too. I simply did a double fold up and sewed it with my machine. With this fabric and the thread I used you can barely see it. You could also do a real hem by hand so that the stitching is truly not visible. That is up to you!
Want to know another mistake I made earlier on in the dress making process? Have a close look at the finished dress below. Notice something? Take a guess and put it in the comments. I’ll fess up soon, I promise!
Y’all, I really learned a lot and had fun with this dress and I hope you did, too. Despite the zipper being a bit fussy, my daughter still wants to wear it all the time. As expected and planned, it is a bit big for her but not too big to wear, and it should last us a good long time since she will get to grow into it. Thank you so much for being a part of this with me!
Now onto to new adventures! No Time For DIY is leaving on a jet plane for three weeks starting this Tuesday. I’ll be heading to New Jersey for some quality time with the fam and hopefully, a whole lot of beach time! This means not a whole lot of sewing time so you may not see as much of that over the next three weeks as there has been BUT knowing that this was happening, I planned to do my next giveaway for the first week that I’ll be gone so that is coming up very soon! I’m sure I’ll have some thoughts to share, even sans sewing machine over the next few weeks, and the Home Matters Party will be happening every week as scheduled so don’t be a stranger!