Items you will need
- Roll of basic brown paper
- Pattern paper (or tissue paper that won’t bleed onto fabrics)
- Long ruler or yardstick
- Pens or pencils
If you’ve been searching the wedding gown shops and not finding the dress of your dreams, it’s possible that you need a custom gown made to fit your wants and needs. If you’ve hit the pattern and sewing shops but still aren’t finding the design you’re after, maybe you want to make your own wedding pattern so you can design and create your own wedding dress. It requires hard work and a few materials.
Sketch the complete dress so that you can see what you’re envisioning, using paper and a pencil. If you are making the pattern for your own dress, identify the specific details of the style and cut. If you are making the pattern for another bride, make careful notes about the gown. Once you create the pattern, the vision of the dress is not as easy to see, so take the time to start with the dress as you see it and then piece it apart in the pattern.
Write down all of the measurements for the pattern. These measurements should include the length of the gown (including the bodice and the skirt, if the pieces are separate), the width of the arm holes (and whether the gown will have separate sleeves), the width of the bodice around the wearer’s body (front to back), and the measurements for the fullness of the skirt. Include extra details, such as measurement of the neckline. These measurements will go directly onto the pattern tissue.
Measure the length of the gown onto the roll of paper, using a long ruler or yardstick. Start with the roll of brown paper, as this will give you the opportunity to create the overall shape of the gown before you break it into pieces and transfer the measurements from the pieces onto pattern paper.
Measure the width of the armholes on each side onto the brown paper, and then measure the width of the chest, waist and hip areas onto the paper. Finish off with the measurements of the neckline and the sleeves, if there are any. Measure carefully to include room for seams and for taking in extra fabric if necessary.
Transfer the measurements onto pattern paper, using pens or pencils. Dress patterns divide the dress into sections: two pieces for the bodice, one (or two) pieces for the skirt, two pieces for the sleeves. As you transfer the measurements, hold the pattern paper up to yourself (or the bride) to make sure that the measurements look accurate.
Making a wedding gown from a pattern is a challenge even for an advanced seamstress. Making the pattern for the gown can be a step up from this. Be fair to yourself about your sewing skills and your knowledge of working with patterns before committing to this project.