Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Maternity dress makeover -> Party Dress

My co-worker was to be matron of honor in her friend's wedding at the same time she was due to give birth to her little girl (who is 6 months old today!) She bought this dress in a larger size and had it altered. Then she had the baby the day before the wedding and never wore it. She hates to shop and needs a holiday dress, so I sized it back down for her.

Here it is- finished except for the beaded trim on the sides that need to be re-attached:
(cute style for maternity dress, eh?) I decreased the side seams by 1" at the armscye and 1.5" at the empire waist seam, tapering to 1" down to the hem. I completely de-constructed the bodice. The only part that made me nervous was the narrow hems. But I am very pleased with the results. Below you can see the narrow rolled hems (straight stitch on regular machine) and the rolled hem serge on the chiffon seam.
Oh- and I moved the spaghetti straps in the back to compensate for the rest of the fact that this is a size 16 dress cut down to fit a pretty tiny person. Right now they are held by safety pins until I confirm the length of the straps.
The lining and the dress are both made from the same fabric; a polyester crepe. The overlay is a polyester chiffon. The chiffon was originally finished with a French seam but I couldn't maneuver it to sew a French seam after the alteration. Instead, I used the serger set for a narrow rolled hem. It was my first time using a narrow rolled hem on the serger, and had I known it would work so well, I would have done all the hems that way. It was fast and easy and looks better than I expected.
To help me handle the fabric, I sprayed it with starch and it worked great to stiffen the fabric slightly and keep it from fraying. I pressed with a lot of steam and the starch seemed to just disappear afterwards.

I really didn't intend to load the pictures in this order (kinda reverse!) but I'm leaving it this way. This is just a little blogging on a little sewing. I bet Holly will let me take her picture when I take it back in to work. This week we have the party dress, a potluck lunch and decorating for Christmas. We are entering into competitive holiday decorating this year- it will be as gaudy as we can get it.
Now. I am glad that's finished, as I wish to sew something new to wear, for me.
Me, me, me.
Happy Sewing!


  1. You are really nice because I HATE to sew for co-workers and try VERY HARD to dissuade them from asking me! The dress looks amazing!

  2. You are a good girl, fixing that for Holly.

  3. I hate reworking a garment, however successful the outcome, so - re your closing remarks - go for it ASAP, you have earned the right for a little me creativity! OllieV

  4. Great job! These jobs are the most discouraging in terms of having to take something completely apart and remake it, yet the most rewarding in being able to take something useless and make it beautiful again. I've had a few of these over the years!

  5. Very nice work. You deserve your "me" time. Enjoy :)

  6. Robin,

    The alterations on the red dress look perfect. That was such a kind thing to do for your friend.



Thanks for visiting my blog and Happy Sewing, xo

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.