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Have you finished sewing up your Halter Dress with Peter yet? Whether you’re just getting started or rounding out your garment, we have some great additional techniques from our friends at Coats & Clark to help you put the perfect finishing touches on your fantastic dress projects.

Also, don’t forget to upload your finished projects by Monday, October 3rd with the phrase “Sew Along” in the title for a chance to be featured in our Sew Along Slideshow and win great prizes from both Coats & Clark and Free Spirit Fabrics!

Halter Dress Border

From the Prints Charming collection by Tula Pink for FreeSpirit fabrics:
Dandelion VTP02 Coral, and VTP03 Coral.
Aqua fabric, S20
Yardage determined by the pattern size

Coats Dual Duty XP General Purpose, 1 spool each:
Color 2100 (red)
Color 5520 (aqueous)
Color 7330 (yellow)
Color 5480 (oriental teal)

Tear a way stabilizer
Basting Spray (such as KK2000)

The dress shown was made using Halter Dress #116. Note that the skirt was changed to a gathered skirt without pleats and a border added.

Adding a Border to a Skirt:

- Determine the length of the skirt by measuring from the waistline to the desired finished length. Skirt pattern length= Finished length – 5” border + 5/8” seam allowance.

- For the border, cut a strip of the coral (VTP03) fabric 11 1/4” wide x the circumference of the skirt, plus 1 1/4” for seam allowances.

- Appliques. There are four of each applique. Cut 4 butterflies and 4 dragonflies from the aqua fabric. Cut 4 butterfly wings and 4 dragonfly wings from the dandelion print fabric (VTP02).


- Place the large butterfly base (aqua) on tear away stabilizer. Lightly spray the wrong side of the wings with basting spray and position in place. Now have fun! Thread the machine with Dual Duty XP red and select a decorative stitch. Sew around the edges of the wings, pivoting as needed. Remove the tear-away stabilizer. Repeat for the Dragonfly. Make four of each.

- Fold the border in half, right side out and lightly press a crease in the center.


- Lightly spray the appliques. Position the butterflies and dragonflies alternating on the top half of the border strip. Place tear-away stabilizer under applique. Thread machine with Dual Duty XP Aqueous thread and using a decorative stitch sew around the appliques. Thread Machine with Oriental Teal. Using a narrow satin stitch, stitch around the body of the butterfly and dragon fly creating details as show. Thread machine with Yellow thread and select a triple-stitch or saddle stitch. Stitch wing details as show. Remove stabilizer. Repeat with all appliques.


- Sew the short ends of border strip together using a 5/8“ seam allowance. Press seam open. Fold the border in half so that it is now 5” wide.

- Cut a strip of the aqua fabric 1 3/4” wide by the length of the circumference of the skirt. Fold in half long ways. Press.

-Pin border to skirt, right sides together with the aqua fabric inserted between the border and the skirt. Stitch in place. Press seam towards skirt.

Voila! You’ve just added a custom border to your Halter Dress project!

Now let’s try the belt:


Aqua (Free Spirit Designer Essentials S20) Fabric- 4” x fabric width
Print Fabric (Prints Charming by Tula Pink for FreeSpirit- VTP14 Coral)- 4” x fabric width
Stabilizer (we used Pellon Ultra Firm) – 1 3/4 “ x fabric wide
Tear away stabilizer- 2” strip
Dual Duty XP General Purpose in colors Red (2100), Aqueous (5520), Yellow (7330)



Aqua fabric: 4” x length of waist measurement
Print Fabric: 1 1/4” x length of waist measurement for Belt. 2 strips 12” x 3” for ties.
Interfacing: 1 3/4” x finished length of belt


- Ties: fold 12” strip in half lengthwise and stitch across one end and the side using a 1/4” seam allowance. Turn the strip and press. Repeat for the second strip. Set aside.


- Place tear a way stabilizer under the aqua belt fabric, layer the print fabric, right side up, centered on the aqua fabric. Lightly mark the lengthwise center of the belt.


- Select decorative stitches on your machine. . Thread machine with red Dual Duty XP. Stitch lengthwise edges of print fabric. Thread top of machine with yellow Dual Duty XP thread. Stitch on center marking.


- Fold the ends to 1/2” to the wrong. Press. Fold the belt in half lengthwise, right side together. Stitch the long side using a 1/4” seam allowance. Press the seam allowance open.


- Turn the belt to the right side centering the seam and press.
- Trim firm interfacing to length of belt. Insert into belt, by attaching a large safety pin to the end and pulling it through.


- Insert the raw edges of the ties into each end of belt. Sew the ends close.




  • Wedding_photo_avatar_large

    Sep 28, 2011, 11.15 AMby Maureen Kubisz

    That is a cute way to use decorative stitches on a garment sewn for adults

  • Ghetto_girl_goes_to_colo__large

    Sep 28, 2011, 04.10 AMby turtlegirl00

    I think i might do a gathered skirt rather than pleated… so intimidating! eeeek! i love the color combos of this dress.

  • Usbw_large

    Sep 28, 2011, 01.51 AMby audrashadforth

    These are gorgeous ideas!

  • Missing

    Sep 27, 2011, 07.24 PMby geekster

    Really pretty must try this, only joined this site a while ago, i have loved following the sew along hope you do another one soon.

  • 10696179_10153140774217586_1884977338661526552_n_large

    Sep 27, 2011, 05.36 PMby woman

    Wow this is adorable!

    • This is a question
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