Here is the front panel from the bodice.
I started by tatting a piece to fit the required shape. Then I layered a piece of net, the silk fabric and a calico support in an embroidery frame and stitched the tatting down. After that, I stitched down masses of beads. Only then did I mark out the pattern and cut out the panel. This is important because all that sewing pulls the fabric in enough to make a noticable difference. If you cut it out first it would be too small by the time it was ready to use in the dress.
You can see here that I also outlined the seams with tiny beads and the neckline with pearls.
The waist had my favourite tatted edging.
You can see here how I built up the beads on top of the tatting. Adding beads to tatting as it is worked and sewing beads down on top of plain tatting give different results. For one thing, sewing them on afterwards let you fill in rings with a bead, it also lets you use larger beads than would be convenient for a large piece.
Here is a close up of the 3D flowers that edge the upper back. The flowers were made individually as this gives more wriggle room for making them fit perfectly. The pearls were sewn on afterwards.
Another view of the back edge. The back too had net above the silk. The buttons I covered myself with the silk of the dress. For anyone who has never done this, it is surprisingly easy once you have had a little practice.
More next time!