As the title of the post pretty much sums up, here is a post to break down the elements of what was done to my fabric before my dress was put together...
Lightening the Fabric:
I have posted about it before here, but again here is a quick recap of what I did to the fabric that I purchased from The Oxford Street Cloth Shop: I put the 6 meters of fabric into my front loader washing machine with two packages of RIT Dye Remover at 60°C. As the fabric was silk chiffon with metallic thread (and expensive at that!) I did not want to ruin the fabric. At the same time, I knew I had to take the plunge and do what had to be done, and find out the consequences later!
You may recall I have previously stated that the fabric I used was the same as the one used in the show. The caveat was that the fabric for the show was lightened, hence my research of the above on how to lighten this particular type of fabric. The good news is that if you use different fabric, the above steps to lighten would not be necessary!
Painting the Fabric:Funnily enough, I was sure I'd taken more photos whilst I was printing my fabric. I was probably paranoid about getting paint on my camera.
I'm fairly certain that the pictures speak pretty loudly themselves about how things went down. But to break it down for you....
I decided to cut my fabric first, and then print the gold on it. My dress is constructed from four pieces of fabric.
I used sea-sponges to print on the gold paint. I alternated between these two pictured, to give variety in the printing. Each sponge is approximately the size of my hand. I made sure to have a fabric covering to protect the table beneath. Thanks to my bestie Corinna for letting me do this in her backyard!
Apparently the fabric paint I used will set permanently once it is ironed in a particular way, but I decided to not do this (guilty as charged!) because 1: I was running low on time and 2: I wasn't sure how well I would go with expensive silk chiffon and my iron! The paint and sea sponges were both purchased from a local arts supply store, Jackson's.
Pleating the Fabric:
In the show, the fabric of the dress has very structured pleating. I decided that due to time restraints and not having done anything similar before to not include pleating in my design.
I do pleat the fabric where it meets the shoulder pieces, but I did not worry that it was not a feature that continued to the hem of the finished dress.
From washing the fabric in my machine, it left a wrinkled effect on the fabric. I actually thought that it would work just fine this way, and therefore did not pleat the fabric; that is the end result you see in my dress.
If you have any questions about the above, please don't hesitate to ask and I'd be happy to help where I can. Things might get a little hectic at home, as we are moving from our unit to a house! Just a little bit exciting :D It's felt a bit like a drawn-out process, but it will be worth it in the end. I'm excited to have more room for my girl-cave! :D But I hope to see you soon!