Note: These instructions are for the printable PDF pattern available in my Etsy shop.
Last time we assembled the SKIRT. Now we’ll move on to the BODICE and HALTER TIES.
Note: This pattern has a 3/8″ seam allowance unless otherwise noted.
1. We’ll start with the TOP TRIM and BODICE.
2. Fold the TOP TRIM in half, right sides together.
Pin along the raw edges.
Stitch with a 3/8″ seam allowance.
3. Turn the TOP TRIM right sides out and press.
4. Mark the center of the TOP TRIM on the longer side (the same side with the seam), and align it with the top center of the BODICE.
5. Pin the TOP TRIM to the BODICE, right sides together.
(In this case, the TOP TRIM has two finished sides, so pick whichever side looks nicest to be the “right” side.)
5.1 When pinning leave a narrow gap between the raw edge of the BODICE and the edge of the TOP TRIM. It doesn’t need to be much wider than about 1/8″.
6. Stitch using a 3/8″ seam allowance.
7. Open the seam.
Because of the gap left during pinning, the finished edge of the TOP TRIM should conceal the raw edge of the BODICE
8. Press the seam toward the BODICE.
Topstitch the seam.
9. Now let’s move on to the HALTER TIES.
10. Fold one HALTER TIE in half, pinning along the length.
Take one end of the HALTER TIE and fold the corner along the bias.
11. Press the bias fold and then open it back up. (I’ve marked the fold with blue fabric marker to make it more visible.)
12. Cut along the bias fold. If opened, the end of the HALTER TIE should now look like this.
13. Use the bias cut HALTER TIE as a guide for cutting the second HALTER TIE.
13.1 You only need to bias cut one end of each HALTER TIE. In other words, each tie should have a bias cut end and a straight cut end.
14. Repin the end of the HALTER TIE. Here are both ties folded along the length and pinned.
15. Stitch using a 3/8″ seam allowance. The bias cut end of the HALTER TIES should be sewn shut, but the straight end should be left open for turning.
Trim the seams, paying special attention to the sharp corners.
16. Turn the HALTER TIES right sides out making sure to get a nice point on the bias cut corner.
17. Press both HALTER TIES, and then line up one TIE with one side of the BODICE.
17.1 Start at the bottom corners, and note that the edge of the HALTER TIE we’re lining up with the BODICE is the side with the seam.
18. Pin the HALTER TIE to the BODICE, right sides together. Just like we did with the TOP TRIM, offset the raw edge of the BODICE about 1/8″ from the edge of the HALTER TIE.
Stitch with a 3/8″ seam allowance.
19. Open the seam and press toward the BODICE
20. Topstitch the seam.
21. Repeat these steps for the second HALTER TIE.
You might end up with a bit of overhang at the bottom edge of the seam (as indicated by the arrow above). That’s OK!
22. It can easily be trimmed away.
23. To give the apron the sweetheart shape (which is optional, by the way), we’ll focus our attention on the line marked on the BODICE.
Gather or pleat along the vertical line (green dots, shown above.)
Gathering will give a more subtle sweetheart shape, while pleating will be more pronounced.
24. For the most pronounced sweetheart shape, fold three pleats along the aforementioned green dotted line.
Note that the pleats are all stacked on top of one another, similar to the technique used to fold a paper fan.
25. Stitch across the pleats to the horizontal line marked on the BODICE. Backstitch to lock your stitches in place. Stitch one more time just to make sure the pleats are secure.
26. Here is the completed sweetheart detail.
Time to move on to Part 3 – Waistband and Final Assembly