pintuck practice

I am making a blessing dress for baby Ruby (which may or may not actually be her name.  We started calling her that a while ago, and I think it will stick, but don't hold me to it).

Normally when I start a new project, I just wing it, but a blessing dress is special.  It should have french seams and pretty details and not look like mom made it all willy nilly.  I decided this was going to require some research and practice.

Step one, the research (borrowed from my mother-in-law):

There is a newer version available, but I am digging the retro 1979 copy.  It is chock-full of handy information and diagrams.

Step two, the practice (diamond pintucks):

I used this great Riley Blake print to guide my pintucks, no marking required (love that).  I just folded along the dots and sewed.  I'm sure it will be harder to replicate on a plain, white fabric, but it was great practice anyway.  Plus, now I have a cute piece of pintuck fabric for another dress!


Diamond pintucks are a lot easier than they look.  First you sew all of your pintucks in rows going in one diagonal direction.  Iron them down so the tucks are all going in the same direction.  Then sew all of the rows of pintucks going the other diagonal direction, creating the diamond.   Iron again and you are all done.  It looks pretty special (in my opinion) for not all that much extra work.

53 comments:

Emily said...

Gorgeous! :)

Katie said...

Oooh! These look great! I definitely never realized they were so simple. Maybe that's because patterns including pintucks always include so much marking. This fabric was obviously a perfect way to get around that. Genius!

Also, I just have to say, when I took my sewing classes at BYU the Readers Digest Complete Guide to Sewing (the book you pictured) was what we used as our text book and our professor specifically told us NOT to get the newer one because the one you pictured explains things better and has better diagrams and does things with better methods. So, just wanted to put that out there and let you know that you made a great choice to stick with the 70's version, at least according to my sewing professor. And that is a lady that I definitely trust when it comes to sewing.

Em said...

What a lovley job you are doing, I can't wait to see the finished product. Is it easy to sew together into the rest of the dress?

Britten said...

Not much work? You must be kidding... It´s great!

Mandy said...

Wow! I'm super impressed! And you make it sound easy enough that I want to try it...
Mandy, www.craftedition.blogspot.com

jess said...

super cute! love the fabric...can't wait to see what you make out of that...and her blessing gown! My mom made one for my daughter out of her wedding dress, and my second daughter will wear it too!

Jen of ReannaLily Designs said...

That is a great idea to use the print as your guide. I've never tried pintucks, but this is very inspiring.

Jo said...

that looks fantastic!

Ariel said...

Amazing! I need to get brave and give this a shot. Great photo!!!

EdgyK said...

That is the best book for sewing. We used that as our class manual at BYU Idaho and BYU Provo. I have an older version but use it almost every single time I sew clothing.

Your fabric looks fantastic! I love pintucks, they are cute and little.

Christina said...

How beautiful! It must be so fun to get to make girlie things. : )

Sandee said...

i never knew such a thing was possible!!!

Jeff and Bethany Davis said...

Wow, that looks great! Sounds like the blessing gown is going to be beautiful!

Kylie's Mom said...

I love that fabric :) . I've always just used a double needle for pintucks, it saves a bit of time (no folding required).

Shell said...

You've inspired my to pull out my machine and give it a whirl. I do believe I have a special foot for pin tucks - did you use a regular foot?

Great job - can't wait to see the blessing dress.

Laura said...

Those pintucks look fabulous! I haven't seen diamond ones before - nice change!

Cook Clean Craft said...

That looks brilliant. You must be so happy! Can't wait to see the finished dress (and what you do with the sample pintucks)!

Melanie said...

I love things that make us look more meticulous than we actually are. :)
Lovely!

Chris said...

This turned out so pretty. I love adding fun details like this. Thanks for showing this technique. Can I just say I love the name Ruby?

Lorie said...

Oh! I need that in a matching fabric for a pillow on my bed! I think I am going to have to practice pin tucks!!

Amy said...

I'm in love!

Magen said...

So I have a desperate request. Can you keep us all updated on ideas you have for the dress...and progress made? I have NO time to plan a blessing dress and I've been sad that I won't get the chance to make my daughters (in a 4 weeks) BUT maybe you can inspire me at work and I'll get it done! That would be great. Thanks.

cArLa said...

wow, that pintuck is lovely! i have the same 1979 book, my mom gave it to me... it's such a great book!

Casey, Amy and Ryleigh said...

I received a copy of this book from my Grandmother last year... I love that I can reference it!!!! I LOVE this pintuck and what a great idea using a fabric that has a 'diamond' shape to use as a guide!

K. Davis said...

it looks great!!!

The Rose Family said...

We named our first daughter Ruby-- love the name (obviously!). Your blog is amazing. I made your jeans-to-maternity skirt and they saved my life the last weeks of my pregnancy. I was able to wear is up to my delivery date last week. Your tutorials are so easy to follow. I used your taggy animal patterns to make bean bags for my 2 year old-- she loved it. Keep up the great work and thanks for sharing.

Heidi said...

When you mentioned french seams and pretty details, I immediately thought of the book A-Z of Sewing for Smockers. I don't do a lot of smocking, but I have found the book to be a GREAT guide for fine and heirloom sewing techniques. It shows in great detail how to finish children's clothes with professional details.

Deanna said...

Absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! We're having a boy, but I wanted to make him an heirloom outfit...and I REALLY want to do verticle pintucks on the top portion of the outfit....THank you for giving me some more courage to try!!!

Miss Sews-it-all said...

Awesome pintucks! I have to say that this is one of my all-time favorite sewing books! I've checked out the newer version, and still like this vintage copy much better.

Cheryl said...

Love the name Ruby. We're expecting a boy (Samuel Bela - pronounced bay-la) but if it had been a girl we were going to name her Jane Ruby :) Hope you are feeling well.

Miss Jenn said...

I have the same retro book from my mother-in-law. Totally awesome!!

Cami said...

Oh my goodness, that is so beautiful! I'm going to buy that fabric just so I can do some pin tucking.

Laurel said...

That came out so cute! I can't wait to see the blessing dress. It will be so special for her to have one that you made myself. My daughter's two grandmothers worked together to make her blessing dress and it came out gorgeous, we have it framed in her room so she can treasure it always.

Amy said...

Wow! How neat!! I would never have thought to do that!! I am going to have to give this a try sometime!!

heather said...

Wow, I have GOT to try this! Gorgeous!

mummalu said...

Looks amazing! Gorgeous fabric. Looking forward to seeing the little one's special dress :)

Walden said...

Very nifty! This is definitely something I would like to try.

Natalie said...

Oh I love pintucks! Thanks for the little lesson on how to do them. That will be one darling dress!

Hobbyaholic (April) said...

Oh how pretty..I need to try a pintuck. Maybe a clutch or something small 1st. It looks so complex thanks for the simple explanation.

Sew It To Me said...

That is beautiful! Thanks for the tips. I think it would look awesome on a vest too - I am having a boy :)

-Eva

blueeyedfreckle said...

i have been meaning to try these for a long time and have never gotten around to it. you just renewed my desire!

Durrant said...

I love it! Definitely going to try this out! I am in the process of trying to make a cute little boy blessing outfit... so if you have any ideas for boy blessing outfits, I would love to hear them!

Thrift Store Mama said...

I can't imagine youwould ever do anything willy-nilly. Or maybe it's just that your willy-nilly still looks fantastic !

maddmomma said...

It's going to be beautiful! Can't wait to see you next post!

Lucija said...

WOW, this look fantastic! I must try this and make white pintuck itty bitty dress :-)

Liz said...

Those are darling. Making lines to follow on your plain white material shouldn't be to hard if you use tracing paper and a quilters mat. Good luck.

Tab said...

My 1978 RDCGS is my treasure! I found another copy at an op shop the other day and bought it for my daughter. She's 7 months old, but she might appreciate it when she's a bit older :) The pin-tucking is beautiful.

Alicia said...

Wow, I am so impressed! I didn't even know you could actually *do* something like that! I'll keep this in mind for the future!

Melissa at Perry Jayne said...

I had to click on this post- mostly because I have that book. It was my grandmother's. I haven't looked through it since I got i a couple years ago. Sounds like I need to get it out and read about pin tucks. Those are too cute.

charith said...

Love, love, love pintucks! And I love these diamonds!!

Ashley said...

Please show the finished dress! And how to make it...LOVE YOUR BLOG. :)

Amy said...

I loved this idea so much that I made my baby's blessing dress with pintucks. Here is the link to my post http://craftsredesigned.blogspot.com/2010/10/beautiful-blessing-dress.html
Thanks for the inspiration.

liz said...

I used your tutorial and made this top http://thehandmadewagon.blogspot.com/2010/11/diamond-pintucks-continued.html

It was my first time smocking, so thank you for making it successful!