Ballroom dress patterns

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by argentine_princess, Oct 26, 2006.

  1. Nicole17

    Nicole17 New Member

    If you're going for the burda 7879 pattern, I'd recommend buying it from simplicity.com instead of ebay as it's only $9 there. It also might be available in large chain fabric stores in the US (I bought a copy on sale for $2 from a Joann fabrics a few months ago). There's also a thread on danceforums started by Laura documenting how she made a dress from that pattern, although she ended up being a little disappointed by it (the pattern, not the dress - she ended up heavily modifying the pattern). I'm planning on making a dress using the skirt of this pattern and a leotard pattern I made by modifying the KwikSew Swim and Action wear master pattern. That's a fantastic book, by the way. I can't recommend it enough. I just made a syllabus dress (that doubled as a new year's dress, bonus!) and that book was invaluable.

    For latin dresses, Jalie has some interesting patterns that are intended for figure skating and as such already have bodysuits built into them. With a little modification, it seems like they would work well.
  2. jiwinco

    jiwinco Active Member

    I have used this one many times, and modified it for other looks with great success.
    Nicole17 likes this.
  3. mindputtee

    mindputtee Well-Known Member

    One of these days I'll make a blog post on how I modified the "green pepper" skating dress pattern (http: //mccallpattern.mccall.com/gpf813-products-9060.php?page_id=550) into what is essentially my own pattern now. I don't much care for that burda pattern (I've never used it, but the style looks incredibly dated) and don't feel it's worth twenty bucks without some big changes to it.
  4. Lioness

    Lioness Well-Known Member

    I read Laura's thread, and the pattern didn't look so great to work with.

    I had a look through a couple of pattern books today...I've ordered the kwik sew swim and actionwear book, and I was thinking of using a skirt from Simplicity 4188, which looks like it has some godets in it to start with.
  5. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

    Not a huge fan of the 7879 design. Before I "retired" from dressmaking, my preferred technique was just draping on a dress form.
    Miss Silly likes this.
  6. Nicole17

    Nicole17 New Member

    Pattern option D of Mccall's 6608 has full length panels and godets and seems like it might also be a good starting point.
  7. llamasarefuzzy

    llamasarefuzzy Well-Known Member

    I've never made a ballroom dress, but when I used to skate I made my own skate dresses. I would imagine it wouldn't be terribly difficult to modify one of those for a dress... and there are a ton of patterns available.
  8. Dancing Irishman

    Dancing Irishman Well-Known Member

    If you're even reasonably comfortable with basic math/geometry, I highly recommend looking up some info on making a gored and/or circle skirt pattern by yourself to save some money. The pattern itself isn't very hard once you have paper that's big enough.
    ocean-daughter likes this.
  9. Lioness

    Lioness Well-Known Member

    I've made circle skirts by myself before, but none with godets. In a pinch I can do it but I'd rather have something concrete to work from because I'm a pretty novice sewer.
  10. cabbagefairy

    cabbagefairy New Member

    I bought a pattern from DanceSportSewing on etsy and think that would be a great base for a beginner. The leotard was way to short in the body for me (which is a problem I haven't had with commercial patterns) so I highly recommend making up a practice leotard to check the sizing if you go down that path.
  11. Lioness

    Lioness Well-Known Member

    I was having a look at those. I can't wear halter necks, but I was looking at getting the ball gown construction manual.
  12. cabbagefairy

    cabbagefairy New Member

    The one I have isn't a halter neck - there are two styles of base pattern from that seller. I have the manual as well and think a pattern would be much more useful if you are getting one or the other.
  13. bluslu

    bluslu Member

    Okay, so this is the closest thread I can find to address my question. While I can't sew myself to save my life (okay, I could make you a pillow but that's it) and so I am hoping to get a dress made. This will be a smooth dress and I'm needing enough shoulder coverage so I can at least wear a bra with one strap up. Built ins DO NOT work, I have a G+ chest and if it's not completely cupped, it's going everywhere. All of the designs I see have really low backs and have thin straps so I would like to "custom" design a top so that it's maybe a full length sleeve on one arm. The question is, for smooth, which arm is a better choice to have the sleeve on? I don't plan on having any floats, since this dress will be strictly used for smooth. This is for collegiate use so there isn't any involvement of stones in any way either. Any opinions would be welcome.
  14. mindputtee

    mindputtee Well-Known Member

    My vote would be left arm so you get a nice long line going diagonally across your back and out your arm in closed position.
  15. FancyFeet

    FancyFeet Well-Known Member

    As someone else who has to consider the girls in dress design (as-in, bra shop in the specialty stores), there are some designs that do work. A sleeve could be an option, but as another option, I had my current dress made with double criss-cross straps, and put in a real moulded cup supportive bra. The real bra connects directly to the double straps that form part of the dress both in the front and at the sides/back. It's not quite the same feeling as having a strap running across my back, but I feel quite secure.
  16. bluslu

    bluslu Member

    Do you have a picture demonstrating how it works?

    I was leaning towards left arm so glad to see it supported :) I'm okay with having a sleeve, my current costume is a long sleeve leotard with a practice skirt and I have no problems with heat and design. I don't need to have my back showing, though I'm interested in the design you're describing.
  17. ZoeKelly

    ZoeKelly New Member

    I realise this was a few months back; but for future reference - if you want to make a 'backless' dress for G+ cup it is possible... I have an underwired sports bra, which I cut up so that it fastens with one piece of elastic across the back & clips at the side (with the bottom of the bra banding sewn to the underneath of the elastic so you don't actually lose too much of the structure of the bra & it doesn't stretch too much). I also added a thinner strap a bit further up my back (at the 'top of the bra) to keep it in place. One dress I kept one whole side of the bra intact, the other both shoulder straps are replaced with thinner 'normal bra size' bra straps (which is admittedly a tiny bit less secure & when I buy/hopefully make another I think I'll go back to the first option). Whilst this is annoying in that it means adding £30ish to the cost of any dress to replace the bra; it is also means that I am super secure & free to quickstep/jive to my hearts delight even in a dress that is (relatively) backless. I am yet to find a dressmaker that makes anything like this...
  18. Miss Silly

    Miss Silly Active Member

    Ahhh. I always figured that some of the really nice dresses involved draping. Helps it from becoming a figure-skating outfit LOL
  19. NURDRMS

    NURDRMS Well-Known Member

    Totally agree. I've found that I am able to design a much more striking dress if I work with the fabric actually on a form versus laying flat and using a pattern.

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