September 26, 2023
By Esi Hutchinson
Hello and welcome back to our new pattern, 511 Juliette's Dream, a lingerie baby doll dress that comes with two views and in sizes XS-4XL. Today I am going to show you how I made our View B - which has an open front, an unlined bodice with crisscross straps, and a full circle skirt accented with bows on the side seams. Both views of Juliette's Dream can also be made into a casual day wear if wanted, perfect for a spring or summery days - and of course, great for the privacy of home. Find my previous post for a sew along for View A here. In this post, I will go through how I made View B and I will show you how I added a lining for the bodice even though this view has an unlined bodice. This option is good if you don't want to finish the edges with bias tape or edging or if you want more body in the bodice (or if your fabric is sheer and you want another layer).
Fabric and Preparation
This sew along is for View B, has the same fabric options for the previous sew along for View A. This pattern needs fabric that is light and drapey. Use soft and flowy fabrics such as silks like charmeuse, habotai, crepe de chine, or silk synthetics. Cotton voile, lightweight linen, rayon, or rayon/Tencel blends are also great options. Check out our fabric collection we just got a ton of new fabrics added to our beautiful collection. If your fabric is quite sheer you can add lining of the same fabric for this view, but of course a sheer fabric is a great design choice for this pattern.
Always pre-wash your fabric before cutting, unless it is laundered fabric.
For notions, this View only needs bias binding (which I will cover below) and ribbon for the straps and bows. If not lining the bodice, you will need 2-1/2 to 3-1/4 yards (2.3-3m) of 1/2” (13mm) bias binding. If you do line the bodice, you will only need about 1-1/2 yards of bias binding. You will also need 2-1/2 yards (2.3m) of 1/4” (6mm) ribbon or bias binding for straps and another 1-3/4 yards (1.1m) ribbon for bows and ties. You can use slightly wider ribbon, up to 1/2" (13mm) if you prefer. For the ribbon, I suggest something satin or soft. You can also make your own "ribbon" with bias binding - just fold it in half and sew along the edge to close it.
Choose the bodice cup size to fit your bust and cut the size that fits best according to measurements in the yardage chart. To find the best cup size, measure your full bust and high bust. If there is a 2” (5cm) difference, choose B cup; if a 3” (7.6cm) difference, choose C cup; and if a 4” (10.2cm) difference, choose D cup. To facilitate cutting out the pattern, mark your size along the appropriate cutting line(s) with a colored marker. The yardage chart also has approximate finished measurements, if that helps you decide which size to cut. I used the size Small for this project.
You may need to adjust the pattern pieces because these are approximate measurements. Making a muslin first is not a bad idea for a perfect fit for you. You can find the finished measurements on the back of the paper pattern or in the PDF pattern.
If you are not using a lining for View A , serging, overcasting or zigzag stitching can be used to finish seams if desired, especially for fabrics that fray. Picot the raw edges for the hem; and skirt seams could be finished with a French seam. You could also pink the seams for less bulk and a vintage-style seam allowance.
Cutting Out Your Pattern
Cut out your pattern pieces using the different cutting lines for View B. Remember to also cut lining pieces for Front A and Back B if you want or need it. The pattern indicates to only cut one set of Front A and Back B because this can be an unlined top, but I wanted to line the bodice, so I cut two sets. For View B, you do not need the strap pieces because you are supposed to use ribbon to create the straps. However, if you prefer to have wider fabric straps, you can use the Strap piece and cut two from your fabric. You will use the instructions for straps in View A.
Sewing the Pattern
With right sides together, sew center back seam on Back Bodice B, and press the seam open.
With right sides together, sew back to Front Bodice A at side seams, matching notches. Press seam open.
If using a lining, like I did, you should repeat these steps for the lining.
With right sides together, sew center back seam on Back Skirt matching notches. Press seam open.
Then, with right sides together, sew Front Skirt E to Back Skirt at side seams stopping at the single notches. Press seams open to notch. Clip the seam allowance to the stitching (but not through) at notches.
Pinned Front Skirt E to Back Skirt F at side seams stopping at single notches
To finish the hem of the skirt, you will create a picot hem. This is a simple hem that can be used on fine and lightweight fabrics to create a tiny, slightly scalloped hem. Use a wide zigzag stitch along hem edge catching the raw edge in the zig-zag to create picot hem. If fabric frays easily fold under 1/8"-1/4" (3-6mm) and zig-zag wrong side up.
You can also hem the skirt with another method if you want - using a rolled hem or turned under hem.
Close up of zig-zag stitch on Skirt hem
Bodice to Skirt
With right sides together, sew skirt to bodice. Finish the seams and press seams toward bodice.
If you are using a lining (like me), sew the lining to the bodice now. First, it will be helpful if you sandwich your straps between the bodice and lining on the front so they are inside the seam of the bodice. You don't have to do this. I did not, and I added the straps later. With right sides together, sew the bodice to lining at the neckline. You will be leaving the front seam allowance open. Trim seam allowance and corners. Turn the lining to the inside and press.
Pinned bodice lining to Bodice outer layer at neckline
Fold under 1/2" (13mm) on bottom edge of Bodice Lining and slip stitching to previously stitched seam leaving front of bodice open, enclosing the bodice hem.
Now, place gathering stitches 1/8” (3mm) from left center front of bodice, catching both layers of fabric if you have lined the bodice.
Close up of gathering stitches at Bodice center front
Pull gathering thread until fabric measures about 2” (5cm) and stitch within the seam allowance to hold. Repeat with right side.
Bias Binding Time!
The front of this View is finished with bias binding. If you are not lining the bodice, as the pattern indicates, you will also finish the neckline with bias binding. Personally, using bias binding is challenging for me. My advice if you also struggle with it is to press really well, and if making your own bias binding try to cut as precisely as you can so you have enough when sewing the binding to the garment. If you want to see an easy way of making bias binding, we have a blog post here and a video on making continuous bias binding here. These tips really help also!
Cut two pieces of your bias to be as long at each side of the front, from neckline to hem plus 1" (2.5cm).
Press open one side of the 1/2” (13mm) bias binding. Sew pressed-open side of bias to wrong side of left garment front. Repeat with right side.
Trim seam allowances to 1/4” (6mm), and fold under 1/2" (13mm) at top and bottom edges of bias binding.
Turn bias binding to right side, folding it over the remaining seam allowance and press.
Press and edgestitch through all layers.
If you are not using a lining, you will sew bias binding to the neckline edge in the same way as the center fronts, trimming and turning under ends of bias so that they line up with the front edges of bodice and raw edges are enclosed.
My main advice here is to get someone to help you! I would also maybe use string as guides for your final fabric or ribbon so you know how long to cut your straps. Either way, make sure to cut your ribbons several inches (or even 6-12 inches) longer than needed so you can adjust them easily.
Again, you can use ribbon or you can make your own spaghetti straps with fabric or bias tape or binding. Just make sure you have enough length for the straps. Pin two straps to each side of the front bodice where marked on pattern and sew securely to the bodice. The inside straps/ribbons will be about 5” longer than the outside straps/ribbons. The inside straps will crisscross in the back and the outside straps will just go over the shoulder. Adjust to fit the wearer, and pin and sew the straps in place on inside back of garment where indicated on the pattern piece.
All Straps sewn on to Bodice Front and Back
If using straps from View A, follow instructions for View A, and sew in place on inside of the bodice as marked on pattern.
Front Ties, Side Ties
Either make spaghettis from self-fabric or use ribbon and securely sew two 10” (25.4cm) ties to inside of bodice at the waistline and two at inside of the neckline edges on each side of center front, as marked on pattern.
Don't forget to remove gathering stitches if visible.
Using about 10” (25.4cm) of ribbon or spaghettis, tie a bow and hand or machine sew it to garment at the top of the side slit on each side.