Summer is definitely here, and I love all the bright happy colors that come with the season. I was in JoAnn Fabric recently and noticed that their gingham taffeta is back on the fabric shelf, perfect for a summer version of Southern Belle. For your inspiration pleasure, here's the detailing that I put into mine:
I love gingham because it's easy to layout and cut with the grain, and unlike plaid, does not need to be matched. It's a classic fabric that has the look of sweet innocence, rivaled only by dotted swiss (wish I had some of that!). The only deviation from the pattern is a bias pin-tucked yoke and embroidery, adding some color for a contrast ribbon.
First, cut a rectangle on the bias a little wider and longer than the yoke pattern piece. Using a 1/4" double needle with white thread, sew every other stripe, all lengthwise stripes first, then switch to the crosswise. It creates a pretty criss cross texture.
Be sure mark the yoke pattern with a bias grain line and cut out the pattern piece. The pattern calls for a lining also, which gives structure to the yoke and ensures that this bias piece will not ever stretch out of shape. Cut the lining on grain as marked. Include interfacing as directed.
Since my placement was to be over the seam, I added the embroidery after the skirt was complete. I used a Viking design from 1998 called Fantasy, Card #30, Design #3, but any flower could look lovely.
Add a silk flower in similar color and flower type at the waist/bow for a real vintage effect and a summer dress knock out!