Mrs Bowden’s top tip – flat straps!

Strappy summer frocks
Can we safely say that summer has arrived?  Certainly for the past few days I have dug out some of my most favourite summer frocks to wear and many of them feature straps in some form;  either as part of the bodice or to help with closing a wrap dress.
If you have seen me out and about or visited the Sewing School you may well have noticed my blue wrap dress I made from a Colette Pattern called ‘Crepe’.  It is a very easy make as there aren’t any closures to worry about and the fit is forgiving enough as it is a wrap dress.  The other clever feature of this garment is the back is cut with two layers of skirt so there is no risk of exposing your foundation garments with single layer dress flapping!
So onto today’s top tip; straps.   Many summer frocks feature these and they are mostly made by creating a long tube with a seam that runs down one side.  Once you have stitched the long seam and turned it through you can be faced with a bouncy pipe of fabric.  Trying to get the seam to lie on the edge of the tube is a challenge and so this tip deals with getting a beautifully flat and even strap.
Instead of trying to press the seam to the edge straight away, arrange the fabric so the seam is in the middle allowing you to press the seam line and settle the seam allowances down.  You may well think you’ll get pressing marks but you can steam these out later on.
Once you have pressed it roll the seam to the side – you should notice it

automatically lies flatter, press it again in this position.

A lovely flat strap ready for use on your glorious garment.
Here you can see the strap in action as the bow which will eventually be a glorious wrap dress featuring flamingo fabric and a sweetheart neckline with a row of wading flamingo’s – I’ll post a picture of this little cracker when it’s finished.
I do hope you have enjoyed this little tip – it would be lovely to hear from you.

As always,  in stitches,

Amanda x

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