As many others are commenting, Self-Stitched September is certainly helping me get through my to-do pile. For my Day 13 outfit, I pulled Vogue 2903 out of my closet, where it has been hanging since April, in a not-super-wearable state. Basically, it had gotten much too big for me. So I resewed some seams, added some funky darts and shortened the skirt. Much more comfy now!

[too big, too long, too much shoulder!]


The main problem with this dress is that since I made it this spring, I’ve lost a little weight and some inches from my waist, hips and bust. Enough that it wasn’t comfortable for me to wear. I also initially made the dress longer than I like, and even though I know I have wimpy little shoulders and tried to account for that, the shoulders just barely stayed in place before I lost weight. Once my bust measurement went down, it was a losing game!

To reduce the width in the midriff, I resewed the side seams, starting right under the arm, and scooping out about 2″ at the widest part (4″ total)- right over the waist/ribbon belt. I could have taken some width out of the arm as well, but decided to not mess with it. I also basically did a vertical ‘dart’ on the center front seam, pinching the fabric and tracing out a line that removed about  3″ total right at the base of the neckline, and tapered to nothing by the time it reached the ribbon belt.

Once I made these adjustments, there was serious gaping in the front and back neckline. I took care of the gaping by adding some horizontal shoulder darts, pinching out about 2″ of fabric right along the neckline (for each dart) and tapering to nothing where the dart meets the princess seam.

[a view of the alterations from the inside of the garment]

The horizontal darts at the shoulder aren’t the most elegant solution, but it works and sort of makes the sleeves look like raglan sleeves now.

[my new hybrid set-in-raglan-sleeves]

Once I got the bodice fitting better, I cut three inches (more or less evenly) from the hem of the dress, and re-hemmed with a simple narrow hem. I stitched 1/2″ from the raw edge of the hem, turned up along the stitchline and pressed, then stitched the turned up fabric down close to the folded edge, trimmed the fabric, then turned up along the fold and stitched close to the folded edge again.

Here’s the view from the side.

[I’m tugging on the front to show off the extra fabric!}
Here’s a before and after of the back. The ‘original’ back view was taken in April, and I was a little bigger then, but you can really see how wide the neckline was and how the shoulders were not in the right place.

I like the dress now and it’s fine for a casual around the house dress. This was a practice dress to begin with, sewn up with very, very cheap (like, $1.50 a yard, I think) quilters cotton. This dress takes a LOT of yardage, I think I used almost 10 yards of the 45″ cotton! Very, very flowery cotton…My original review can be read here.

patty brower

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