Saturday, December 20, 2008

How to sew a Dirndl - Part IV The Leib and finishing

For the bodice I use a pattern a seamstress drafted according to my measurements during a sewing course.
Cut the pattern, from the rest of the fabric make bias-cut stripes:

The facing of the left front piece was reinforced with fusible interfacing for the button-holes which will later be there.
I also cut the interlining.
The interlining of a Dirndl is worked a bit different than usual: You baste it to the according pieces of your fashion fabric and treat them as one piece:

From the bias-cut stripes I made piping (using the zipper-foot of my sewing-machine) that I placed between the back pieces before sewing: (using the zipper-foot again)

Then I cut the seam allowances of the back center piece and interlining, the bias-cut stripes and the back side piece fashion fabric (but NOT the back side piece interlining) to about 0.5 cm. I folded the seam allowance of the interlining of the back side piece around this and sewed it in place by hand:

Next, I sewed the darts in the front pieces, basted shoulder and side seams and tried the bodice on (I definitely should have cleaned the mirror first ...)

I was quite content with the fit. The folds from shoulder to bust will vanish as soon as the neck-line and armholes are finished, and I'm going to make the side seams a bit tighter (those are sewed when the armholes are finished)
Next, I decided on a neck-line and the line for the armholes. Those edges I also bound with piping, finally I sewed the side seams:

On the left side, the piping is sewed in place by hand:

On me, it looks like this by now:

Now it's time to mark your exact waistline and the position for the buttonholes. I placed them 1.5 cm from the neckline and waistline, respectively, the others I divided evenly. Then I sewed the buttonholes and buttons:

Next, you sew the Kittel to the Leib. Use the threads in the Hansl to pull the skirt ot the right length. The pleats should start and end right between the front dart and the side seam, the rest of the fabric is folded once or twice (the bag should be hidden in one fold):

The Hansl-threads are not cut but braided, so that you can alter your Dirndl. (Also, don't trim the seam allowances on the side seams):

After you sewed the Kittel to the Leib, sew the Kittel closed (up to now, it still was a rectangle of fabric). Leave enough room in order to be able to dress easily:

Now there's only the hem left!
I decided to make a so-called Kittelblech. This is a 15 cm wide piece of fabric in a contrasting colour. I stitched it to the hemline (right sides facing), folded it about 1cm wide and stitched in the ditch:

Important: Do NOT cut any fabric away! This way, your Dirndl remains fully alterable!
Now there's still about 10 cm of the Kittelblech left, I use this for the hem (of course: by hand!)
et voilá:

(I look a bit awkward in this picture ... hemming by hand is not really my favourite work in the middle of the night ;) )

9 Kommentare:

  1. Replies

  2. Das sieht einfach traumhaft aus!

    Liebe Grüße, Smila

  3. Hi! Your dirndl is really well done, it looks great!!!
    Two things I would like to add: I Aussee we don´t wear a Kittlblech but a Beserlbortn, which is a fringy braid in black colour thant is sewn to the hem. Second: Your seams in the back are a bit close, in our region we leave around 10 cm in the back pattern.

    what else? great job!! and the colours you chose fit you so well!

  4. I just want to say you did a great job! I have sewn many dirndls from patterns purchased in Germany. I had to translate (long before the internet was available) from a German/English dictionary. The pattern looked like a railway station with many different kinds of lines intersecting to represent the various dirndl patterns in the book and the sizes as well. I was able to decipher the whole thing and accomplish this several times. I think you did a wonderful job. Dirndls are a challenge and you are amazing. ps I love how you sewed on the buttons, I'm going to pin that part on my pinterest page. xo

  5. wow, das sieht super aus! danke für die vielen bilder und anleitungen, ich werd ausprobieren!
    lg, betty

  6. I am trying to make my own dirndl. I made one last year but found that it was really flimsy. I want it to be stronger and more structured. Do you put anything into the bodice to make it stay nice and flat at the front? Do you use heavier interlining to make it strong? I'm not sure what to do, maybe boing?

    1. Hi Fran,
      I'm so sorry I missed your comment! Still - better late than never I guess. I didn't use any boning in my bodice, just the fashion fabric and lining. However, the linen I used is quite stiff and holds its shape very well. I have a few RTW dirndls which use plastic boning in the side seams and along the center front closing (hook-and-eye). Does this help you?

  7. Bettina, Thank you so much for your detailed blog! I attended my 1st Oktoberfest last year (in the U.S.) and thought the dirndls I saw were cute until I saw a "real" one that was obviously well made and so beautiful that I decided I needed a dirndl like that for my next Oktoberfest. I found it difficult to find a pattern here that would give me the look I wanted. I was very excited when I stumbled on a link to your blog on Pintrest! All the photos, detailed instructions, and finished product were so wonderful that I felt confident enough to give it a try without a pattern. I purchased my fabrics according to the yardage you specified with the exception of using a cotton duck for the lining for more stability. I drafted my pattern according to your photos and followed all your directions for the construction of the dirndl and apron with the exception of doing a hook and eye closure with boning along the front closure only. Your technique for piping was new to me and so much easier than how i was taught. I also made a silk box pleated trim (froschgoscherl i think?) for the neckline and used the silk and some black braided trim to trim the bottom of the skirt. It took me many hours but of course the finished product looks so much better for the effort. It all turned out beautifully and I can't thank you enough for the time you spent on this blog! -Laurie C.