With the help of lots of advice from all of you, my pink chambray dress is finished. It started off as a mis-matched pink sack a couple of weeks ago, and is now at least the same color. Given the transformation, I would say that I am generally pleased with it. On the plus side, it’s incredibly comfortable. It feels like a mumu but hopefully it doesn’t look quite as much like one now.
The advice of the wonderful sewing community was overwhelmingly to not give up. I have to admit that I thought that the dress couldn’t be saved. But with the wonderful support I plugged onward.
I first ripped apart the bodice to separate the contrasting fabric from the pink chambray. Fortunately I had extra pink chambray and I was able to cut out a new bodice that matched. Since the dress was way too big, I took in all of the seams about .75″ and then used my favorite technique. Shirring.
Shirring will always help a garment to fit better by defining the area that is shirred. In this case, I shirred the dress at my natural waist. If you would like to try this technique, here are the steps: (1) find and mark your natural waist (or the smallest part of your waist if you prefer an empire fit); (2) determine the final width of shirring that you would prefer ( I used 2.5″ of shirring to give extra definition and shape); (3) starting at the center- your natural waist- mark rows moving up and down from the waist center point. I sewed a row of shirring at my natural waist and then moved up and down in rows 0.25″ apart.
At the end of the day, is this my favorite dress? Probably not. I love how comfortable it is, but I don’t think that it’s quite work appropriate. I’ll probably stick to just wearing it on the weekends. However, if I had chosen a different fabric- perhaps a crisp cotton poplin or a soft cotton lawn the dress would look completely different. With the right alterations I don’t think that this pattern deserves the bad reviews that it receives.
If can find a nice soft flannel, I’ll probably make it as a nightgown. Long sleeves and the full-length skirt option would make a wonderfully snuggly nightgown during the cold winter nights.
Here is the finished dress. What do you think?