I hadn't shirred anything before so I read a few tutorials (mainly this one) and went from there. Mine is nowhere near as neat as hers but you get the idea :)
I shirred the whole piece and then cut the size panels I wanted, because I needed two - one for each side of the zip. My idea for construction was based on a vintage swimsuit that I have - two shirred panels are inserted in the back, and the ends are sandwiched between two layers of unshirred fabric.
That doesn't make much sense does it...
Does this help???
I also wanted to put boning in the bodice, and at the back where the zip is going, to give it some shape and support. I thought the best place was to run the bones along the seam lines of the lining, like this:
That white stuff is the boning casing
So I put the bodice all together so all that was left to do was add the skirt and put in the zip. The skirt was pretty easy, just two big panels, joined together and gathered to size. The hard bit was getting the zipper it, it was last of all and manhandling it through the machine was a bit of a pain - however we made it!
I totally ran out of time after this, so I haven't even tried it on yet. Next post will obviously be me swanning around in the dress and the fabulous sparkly pineapple bag that started it all!!