This dress has fascinated me for months. I love the pleated detail found both in the front and back of the dress. These (I think) were panels inserted in the bodice as separate pieces. My theory is that these dresses were worn by women of childbearing age to allow for pregnancy, the pleated panels may have been adjustable to accommodate a growing baby bump. Stehfaltenkleid means “standing pleat dress”.
I saw a wonderful tutorial/blog about how to make it here: http://www.bettinaschreier.com/clothing/c_duerer.html
Much like Bettina, I fitted a bodice to make the correct shape for this dress.
I used a pattern piece from another dress to draft from, which worked perfectly. Note the top back neckline —–>
I lowered that later. When I used the pattern pieces for the final dress, I used only half of the front and back, making sure they were symmetrical.
The next challenge that I was really worried about was the sleeves. I’d never drafted my own sleeve pattern before, and I knew I’d have to create grande assiette sleeves. These are sleeves with big arm openings to allow for range of movement. I saw Bettina use a t-shirt as a pattern. I didn’t get a picture of it, but I put on a fitted old t-shirt with long sleeves, put on my bodice pattern (I had cut the new arm openings and sewn the pattern pieces together), and had my husband trace the arm openings and draw a line down the back of the sleeve of my t-shirt with a marker. I took off the t-shirt and cut out the sleeve:
Luckily, Bettina is much the same size as me, so the measurements she had, and the measurements I had matched pretty closely. Just in case, I measured the armhole (25″), and the sleeve pattern’s top edge (19″) That means I needed to add gores. One small gore in the front that measured about 3 1/2″ along each side, and a larger gore in the back of the sleeve that measured about 6″ along each side. Seam allowances take up some of the extra fabric. The back seam of the sleeve will actually be open and laced, so a curved cut was made about 6″ from the top of the sleeve edge. Everyone’s measurements will be different, so my measurements should not be used as a guide. I hope that at least my process will be helpful. Bettina’s website tutorial was invaluable!
More to come…..