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Forum > Fitting Woes > altering rtw dress ( Moderated by CarolynGM, Deepika)

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altering rtw dress
procraftinate
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procraftinate
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Date: 3/9/13 9:25 PM

I was given a dress like this one (in a different color and size) since it didn't fit her anymore and stitching in the zipper is coming undone and she thought I could fix it. She was never able to wear it and I would like to for a friend's wedding next month.
The fit problem is that it is way too big in the bust, and the straps are too long.(at least thoose are the only noticable sizing issues since the waist has a tie in back) It is a side zipper so I can't do the cheater pinch it in as much as I need and hand sew it like I usually do. What would be the best way to alter this?
Thanks in advance!

genierita
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Date: 3/10/13 4:21 AM

Hi procraftinate
Generally I approach these alterations from the bodice being the key. Get that fitting perfectly first. The straps can be adjusted while the lining is open. I would alter this dress from the back (create side back seams if it's way too big) and take in the one side only without disturbing the other side seam with the zipper if possible. Sometimes it has to be done, but usually you can avoid this. Look for any seams - every one offers an opportunity to take in. Spread the amount as evenly around the body as possible so the side seams stay true.

Release the lining to the bodice - this depends how it's attached and I'm guessing there might be a waist and/or underbust seam that seals the bodice area off. Unpick this so you can get inside. This website might help you. Judith Turner is great.
http://www.geniecentre.com/WordPress/category/clothes-too-big/

Also there will be understitching on the lining at the top of the bodice holding it from rolling up when the straps pull up over the shoulders. Unpick this too so once you are inside the bodice you can release the seam where the straps are stitched to the bodice. I would start with the back bodice and the 1 free side seam - take in with baste stitch then fit. Maybe change the bust cups for smaller if needed? If the front bodice is way to wide, create some princess seams? They just have to match, not be perfect as per a pattern piece- it's your body you're fitting!

Once the bodice is fitting well, the empire line band, waist, skirt can be taken in to fit and hang nicely. I hope this makes sense. Keep us posted of you progress! Take your time - whatever is stitched last, unpick first, then the next layer etc and then reverse out when you're done.
Good luck! Rita

procraftinate
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In reply to genierita <<


Date: 3/10/13 10:16 AM

There are only side seams in this dress, the side seam is serged (don't even see a regular seam) and it is only lined in the front. If I pinch at the top sides I pinch about an inch on each side and the straps are about an inch to 1 1/2 inch too long. The more I read your response the more I want to just take it in and get it done, but I will probably have second thoughts on that too when I hear how much it cost.

skae
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In reply to procraftinate <<


Date: 3/10/13 10:50 AM

It depends how much needs to be taken in. I would have someone come over and help you pinch the sides in. You can adjust the side zipper to fit.
You could open it up to where the top and dress part meets.
take out the zipper just to where the bottom dress starts.
you may need to gather on the sides to adjust how much the top of the dress is being taken in. The other side is minor and you may have to gather there too. the gathers will be small.
once you have the zipper and the other side put together.
you can adjust the straps from there. usually you want to do just the back.
hope this helps you.
I did many of these type of dress.


------
Ecclesiastes 11:7,8 Nothing on earth is more beautiful than the morning sun. Even if you live to a ripe old age, you should try to enjoy each day, because darkness will come and will last a long time. (CEV)

procraftinate
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Date: 3/10/13 5:27 PM

The dress is a 16W, I normally wear a 14 or 16 (depending on the dress) and I end up altering the bodice because of my cup size is smaller than average. I probably won't touch it other than the bodice and straps, the too big fit isn't really noticable expet in the bodice, I will try to talk my dh into pinning it after the kids go to bed tonight. I will also try to get pics up of the inside seams and how much is pinned.

procraftinate
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In reply to procraftinate <<


Date: 3/11/13 2:07 PM

I took the pics of the inside but pictures of it pinned didn't turn out, I need the straps an inch shorter and an inch in on each side.

There is a lightweight foam in the front bodice and some sort of nylon strap/stiff fabric under the folded over edge in the back.

procraftinate
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Date: 3/21/13 3:38 PM

I have the zipper out from the top to the sash, I haven't done anything else yet, I am still trying to figure out the best way.

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