I used Anna Maria Horner’s Maybe from her Innocent Crush line to make this version of Simplicity 2403:

I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.  I think I might be getting the hang of making clothes for myself. A few months back, I bought the book How to Use, Adapt and Design Sewing Patterns.  I was a little disappointed.  I was mainly interested in learning how to adapt sewing patterns and the only adaptation for dresses it includes is how to lengthen or shorten it.  I had already figured that out for myself using the directions printed on the sewing pattern.   It did, however help me figure out how much to shorten it based on the design of the dress.  The book included a chart for recording 17 different measurements which I filled out with the help of my patient husband.  The most helpful idea I got from the book was to measure the pattern and compare it to your body measurements.  For this dress, I measured the distance from the neck to the waistline on the pattern and compared it to my actual measurement.  The pattern was about two inches longer than my actual measurement so I took two inches out of the bodice and back.  This adjustment makes the waist of the dress hit at my actual waist which is very nice.  I have a RTW dress that I bought from Target that I love but the waist of the dress hits me around my tummy.  I’m thinking of getting out my seam ripper and going to town.

I also added about a half  inch to the side of the front bodice pieces of this dress.  I did this because when I put together a muslin of this dress it was slightly too tight in the front.  One of my pet peeves about button up tops and dresses is that they often pull apart or gape across the bust.  So I wanted to make sure that there was enough room to avoid this.  I also put in an extra button, which means that the buttons are close together.

I’ve worn this dress a couple of times now and I love the way it fits.   The only thing I would change is that it has too much extra material in the back.  This happens on every dress and top I make for myself and I have no idea how to fix it.  Perhaps I need to cut a smaller size.  I cut a 12 for this dress even though the pattern told me to cut a 14 based on my chest and waist size.  (and a 16 based on my hips!)  So going down a size further seems ridiculous.  Any ideas would be appreciated.  Also, if anyone knows of a better how to adapt sewing patterns to fit your actual body book, please let me know.


2 thoughts on “Maybe

  1. You might want to try cutting the back piece a little smaller once you are out of the shoulders. My grandmother made clothes for us for years and she used to do stuff like that. My dad has narrow shoulders and a big belly, so she would cut the pattern size that fit his shoulders, so that would be right, then cut it gradually wider and then straight so it would cover his belly without gaping and then tuck properly. You might need to do the opposite – get the shoulders right then cut the back piece gradually more narrow in the area where there is too much fabric. Poor daddy – he hasn’t has a shirt fit right since my grandmother died.

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