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Reply To: Taking in a Dress That’s Too Big

Reply To: Taking in a Dress That’s Too Big

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wow!  I can’t believe you finished…well, almost.  Ok, let’s take care of your problem.  Put on your dress on inside out.  Instead of just sewing in the side seams all an even length we can be more customizing.  It might be a lot easier if someone could help you with this.   I always get the Professor’s Assistant to do this part for me so that way I can stand straight and tall.  Starting with the side seams under the sleeves, pinch both sides at the same time, so they’re pretty equal.  Don’t make it to tight, we want to make sure you’re still going to be able to breathe and move.  When you get to a point that it feels pretty comfortable and you think you are going to like where it is, put in a straight pin right in that spot, straight down, parallel to your previous side seam stitch line.  Continue down to side seams, using this same step until you feel the dress is where you want it.  Carefully, remove the dress and don’t loose any straight pins.  I then use my fabric marker and mark a line following the same path as my straight pins.  Now if there’s a point, where the dress flares out and is no longer supposed to be body hugging, starting at your last straight pin, I just gradually mark my line out to it.  so you have a subtle line connecting your new line to your old line.  Baste on your new line and then try it on.  Always make sure that you’re able to sit down and bend over comfortably in your alterations.  If you like it then go ahead and stitch over the basting line.  If you want it to look nice, remove your old stitch lines with a seam ripper and press the new seam open.  You can trim it if there’s excess seam allowance.  If you’re taking it in enough, you can cheat like me and I just trim off the excess so I have a decent seam allowance still (cutting off the part with my old stitches, thereby skipping the seam ripper step) and then press it open.  Cheaters may never prosper, but we just want to wear the dang dress!  If you have sleeves, you may have to do some adjustment so they look right in the new side seam.  Congrats, you just did your first alteration!  But this is why some people make their first version out of cheap muslin fabric so they can test the fit before doing it out of their real fabric and make any alterations to the patterns if need be.  At least you were lucky that the dress was too big and not too small.  😀