About 10-12 years ago Vanessa Montoro blew up a handicraft community with her silk crocheted dresses where she combined a lot of crochet patterns in one dress.
The needlewomen around the globe began to figure out how to crochet a particular dress, and of course, crocheted similar dresses for themselves.
I’m not an exception, I crocheted one of the Vanessa Montoro dresses for Iplehouse EID Jessica. I have to say, this was a challenge because my Jessica has large breast.
Now I would like to describe how I did that, what methods Vanessa used in her dresses (because she repeated them often), show charts for the dress I’ve used, so you can also crochet the dress.
One of the best things in these crocheted dresses, you have not repeat it loop by loop. You can use the idea, and create you own unique dress!
Since the doll’s body is not as flexible as ours, I had to think about how to put this dress on the doll later . So my dress is not an exact copy of Vanessa’s dress.
When I disassembled the dress prototype, I noticed that the easiest way is to start crochet with an insert along the hip line, and then crochet up the dress bodice from the hip line insert, and after that crochet down the dress skirt. So let’s get started.
Hip line insert
Because the chart, that Vanessa used at a hip line, is not clearly seen on the prototype, I decided to use my own motive. Its pattern is below, each row represented by different colors:
You may crochet each motive individually and connect them together during the process into a long strip, and then close the strip in a ring. I used a crochet method without cutting the thread.
After I finished the hip line insert, I tried it on my doll to be sure it perfectly fits.
Next step is to make double crochet (dc) stitches with 2 chain stitches between them all around the hip line insert, on its both sides:
Choose the central motive on the hip line insert, and mark its central stitch.
Start to crochet the dress bodice using chart 04. I colored different crochet patterns I used on the dress bodice with different colors for convenience. The crocheting goes almost by a circle, row start marked with blue color (on the front center line), then crochet the stitches marked with red, green, carry on with red stitches again until you reach the center front from the other side, after that crochet the stitches marked with green, red and finish with stitches marked with blue. Turn the bodice and start the second row in opposite direction.
Pay attention, that rows 5-12 are different with rows 1-4. Repeat rows 1-2 after you finish row 12 until you reach bodice yoke.
This is the most complicated part of the dress. During the crocheting process, you have to try the bodice on the doll body really often, make “darts” on the bodice front, sides and back by decreasing stitches (make 2 stitches together at these sites). After you reach the waistline, start to increase stitches, making 2 stitches in one stitch from previous row.
Don’t forget to make armholes.
For the bodice yoke use chart 05.
You may use this chart for the back yoke also, if you decide to make it, or just carry on follow the bodice back crochet pattern from chart 04.
Finish the bodice connecting the front and back bodice parts at shoulders by slip stitch.
At this stage, the bodice has a gap between left and right front parts. Use chart 06 as a reference to crochet front bodice fastening strip. The already crocheted part shown with black color, so start crocheting with hdc stitch in perpendicular direction (shown with green color).
Don’t forget to make buttonholes on the left bodice front part.
Next, finish a neckline with hdc stitch as well (a small collar).
Use contrasting thread color to make accent on the dress bodice.
Choose stitches in a column on the bodice and crochet around them with 3 hdc in 1 stitch (see chart 07).
Do the same with horizontal rows on the yoke and at the age of the collar.
For the dress skirt you may use any pattern you prefer, or use my chart 08 as a reference.
I draw only 2 rows of each pattern, but, of course, you may crochet so many rows as you need.
Start with pattern A, use pattern B for transitions between crochet patterns. When you finish the skirt, these rows, I mean rows with pattern B, may be used to crochet ruffles as shown in chart 07. You also may use pattern A for the ruffles.
Start the pattern D with 3 chain stitches, make 2 dc at the base of the chain. Then make 2 dc in another previous row dc and finish this element with 3 chain stitches. The element looks like 2 petals of 4 petal flower.
Combine patterns A, B, C and D in any order until you reach the edge of skirt. Crochet the skirt with ruffles for your desire.
Sew tiny buttons at the bodice, try the dress on a doll, and enjoy the exclusive dress with your doll 😉
I used international symbols for crochet stitches in my charts. But if you don’t familiar with them, please, find crochet stitches symbols at the “Chart symbols” picture.
Revised, published on 28/08/2016