Can you believe that I MADE this gorgeous sequined dress? I’m feeling pretty dang good about it over here! And for once, I’m prepped and ready for New Year’s Eve before the end of December. I call this one a total win.
The details of this make are over on the Minerva Blog today, but I wanted to take a quick moment here on my own blog to talk about sewing with sequins! This was something that seemed very daunting to me, and ended up being no. big. thing. So I thought I would walk you through my process. (PS – I do NOT claim to be any sequin sewing expert, and it is entirely plausible that I had beginner’s luck with this one! But I’m sharing my experience nonetheless. And also hoping it wasn’t beginner’s luck, because my second sequin fabric arrived in the mail yesterday!!).
The first order of business is to choose a pattern that makes sense for your fabric. For me, this meant something that did not have too many additional style lines and seams, but still showcased the beautiful design of the sequins. I also wanted something party-appropriate, and the Roksi Trio dress pattern ticked all of my boxes!
I knew that no matter what I made, I’d want to line it in something silky and smooth. No matter what type of garment you’re looking to create, sequins are not going to be so comfortable rubbing up against your skin! Because I chose a party dress, I chose to line with a super smooth rayon bemberg, and it is glorious. I would’ve used the same lining for a skirt or a jacket!
If for some reason you decide you don’t want to line your garment, you are going to want to sit down and remove all of the sequins from your seam allowances to prevent them from rubbing up against your skin (and to make sewing easier!). You may want to do this even if you are using a lining, to reduce bulk and prevent your sequins from rubbing / cutting your lining fabric. It will also protect your sewing machine needle – you may find that it breaks if you ask it to sew through your sequins! To do this, mark your seam allowances on your cut pieces of fabric and start removing sequins from within those seam allowances. Remember that the sequins are sewn on individually in most cases, so you will need to use your seam ripper to unpick each sequin individually. This can seem daunting and time consuming, but I’d recommend grabbing a glass of wine and turning on a good show on Netflix to make the time fly faster!
Lastly – consider the garment you are making and whether or not a hem is necessary on your sequined outer fabric. In my case, I decided that it was not. I felt that a hem would add bulk and weight to my swingy dress, which I didn’t want. As I mentioned above, each sequin is individually sewn on to the mesh base fabric, which means that you don’t need to worry about fraying or losing sequins at the cut edge of the hem. As long as the look aligns with what you want, feel free to leave that bad boy unhemmed!
I’d be so happy to answer any questions that you might have about sewing with sequins, now that I’ve dipped my toes in the water. I’m looking forward to more sequined garments in the future! I hope this has given you a little hope that YOU CAN DO THIS, too! I hope you get as much enjoyment as I do out of admiring this lovely dress!! Now, go get holiday party ready with your own!
- XX Elizabeth