The Warrior Dress, Part One


In the past week, I’ve been collecting fabric for five upcoming projects, and doing all the sketches and preparation for them. Consequently, I haven’t had much interesting stuff to post. Hopefully soon I can post a fabric haul or a preview of what’s to come, but until then, I have managed to make some progress on a new project! I have had this idea in my head for over half a year, but never could find the perfect bodice fabric. However, the other day, I spotted some that would work perfectly, and since then, have started to finally make some leeway on the design. 🙂 This post will cover making the pleated, floor-length skirt.

I was pretty bad about photographing this one, so excuse the wordiness. I wanted to make something that looked like something a magical, warrior-esque fantasy character would wear, and so with that in mind, I set out to sketch and decide on my final design. I decided to start with the skirt because it’s easy and quick, compared to a more complicated bodice. So, I pleated about 5 yards of fabric down to 24 inches, doing 1 inch pleats with at least 2 inches of depth. This helps create volume and makes the skirt look flowier.

The fabric I used was 60 inches wide so it was very long, at least for me (being only 5 foot 3), so I cut off a strip from the bottom that would become the waistband. I sewed down all the pleats, making sure everything was flat and even.

This fabric is so silky and light that I ended up using interfacing on the waistband to give it some strength. I ironed this on, then folded it over and pinned it to the pleats.

The pinning was pretty quick and simple, and I went ahead and ironed down the pleats before I sewed it down so I could get some idea of the final look. Even though the fabric is light and it isn’t that big of a skirt, all the extra fabric in the pleats means it’s actually pretty heavy.

IMGP4427I sewed down the waistband and pinned it on to my model, and I loved how it looked!

I put an invisible zipper in the back, and put it on. I should point out I am wearing a waist cincher in these pictures, to help achieve the more extreme silhouette I wanted. It only takes about an inch off my waist, but combined with the structured bodice (which will have lacing up the back), it is very effective.


It was still very long, but it looked good! After hemming, it will likely still have a very long train, but that finished it! I decided to hem it at the end because I’m still deciding on trains, and want to finish and see it with the bodice first. And, hopefully, a post will be up on that soon. 🙂




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