Tangling with Bridesmaids

Earlier this year a former bride had me chop off the whole bottom of her dress to just below her butt cheeks so she could be the sexiest women on the Hawaiian island to celebrate her 6th anniversary and hopefully return home pregnant. These are the stories people tell me…OK. So, this week she returns to wear this bridesmaid dress to a wedding she is in. Nice dress from Alfred AngeloAlfred angelo 7266S lilac but as the theme of the wedding is “rustic” aka let’s all wear cowboy boots and fill mason jars with daisies, this gal wanted me to remove the entire lower tier…OK Here is what the grown woman will be wearing…notice the skirt is now 14 inches long…it barely covers her underpants if she is wearing any:lilac

But unto a bridesmaid who was given a dress that needed 3 inches more around her bodice. 2 carly-bac-2k In addition to that, the pleated fabric was all caught wrong in the one side of the zipper and left a lump…nice. So let’s open this puppy up, go through the lining, pull everything out and let out all the side seams:3 getting-inside

Here we are inside out with just the bodice showing, not the lining. Then the satin hem which was thread traced in the chiffon as well will be sewn from the very inside since the lining is attached. Once flipped to the right side they lay flat nicely. The chiffon will have a narrow rolled hem.

4 inside-dress5 thread-baste-hemlines6 pleated-hem7 inside-hem-satin8 need-1.5-inches10 open-waist-213 old-seam-allowance15 inside-lining-bodice

Thankfully the side seams were generous so I could get 1.5 inches from each and the lining is now exposed and you can see the bust cups. Every thing I do to the fashion fabric I have to do to the lining so double the labor. So when your client says it is a simple job to let out the side seams…shake your head at her! See how much fabric was lurking in the zipper seam…WOW like 2 inches each side but this poor girl needed her side seams released not the center back this time.

16 pinned-waist-seams17zopper-seam


Attaching the newly widened side sections to the widened skirt waist and voila’ you can see before pressing that we attained what was needed and the lace straps were not involved just spread a little front and back.


18 side-seams-new

Now for a little giggle…I was inspired by Ruth at Corecouture for her starting some Alabama Chanin garments and decided to make some of my own only with cotton jersey t-shirts. I bought four 2XL shirts in 3 colors for $5 each since they are used double and fabric is cut away anyway why not have some cheap fun? I removed the neck binding and opened the shoulder seams and whacked off the sleeves and this is what I ended up with: You can see I folded the outer shirts with the center front to the side so you can see the huge sleeve opening and it got me to thinking…do they resemble anything in this state? Mr Mole was quick to notice the shape could be…..PANTS! So let’s flip them over, baste the curves seam together and what do we have? Instant karma….Yoga pants, dog washing shorts or sleep shorts or gardening togs…

t-shirt-pants-2t-shirt-pants With a little elastic and some adjusted gathering…you never know…don’t throw out those t-shirts…recycle!

Can’t leave without more garden bounty photos…anyone need some squash?crooknecksZucchini_140822


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35 Responses to Tangling with Bridesmaids

  1. Kathy says:

    “These are the stories people tell me…” Oh, my, THANK YOU for this laugh! You must really get an earful whether you want it or not! Thank you for sharing this post. And t-shirt pants — who knew?

  2. mrsmole says:

    Kathy, there are more bride stories coming…they never end…ha ha thanks for dropping by!

  3. sewbussted says:

    Well, is modesty a word from a foreign language that no one understands? I never cease to be amazed.
    Great idea with the t-shirts, I will use it, and that zucchini is amazing! Enjoy every last bite ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Valerie says:

    I know! You need a time lapse video to show clients just what their ‘simple’ job involves. Your workmanship is wonderful and I am also in awe of that garden.

  5. Trish says:

    How lucky there was so much fabric in the seams of the second dress! I find this is a frequent problem: seams which are only the width of the overlocking. Trying to find fabric elsewhere to let out dresses is an interesting challenge.
    I agree with you about clients having no idea about the time taken. I always cringe when they say ‘it’s only a small job’ or, worse still, ‘I could have done it myself’. I suspect the problem is that they give you a dress which doesn’t fit anywhere and you give it back fitting perfectly, and they think there’s a magic wand involved somewhere!

  6. prttynpnk says:

    Ok, thats it- I need to get out my old wedding attire and make it fancy pole dancing wear and such. I knew the tassel Pasties were a good call!

  7. Bunny says:

    I would so love some of your squash. It wouldn’t be summer without that and corn on the cob!

    OK, so you’re saying someone who has a three inch gap from a weight increase wants you to cut her dress up to her heiny? Yikes. Next she’ll be on Dr. Phil as one of those moms who dresses too sexy for her kids to be seen with.

  8. BeaJay says:

    14″ – that’s jaw dropping! 3″ to add – I am shaking my head in wonder. You really do have clients with strange expectations. Amazed that you pulled off the 3″. Those top / pants are hilarious. You almost have a great fit with them LOL.

  9. Kathy says:

    I really appreciate your posts. I love all the descriptions and the pictures. I have been sewing my whole life but I tremble over alterations. I would rather make something from scratch than alter a ready made garment. I have a bridesmaid dress coming up for my daughter in law, who has been losing weight and wants to lose a little more before I take in the dress. I’m holding my breath. I may send you a SOS message!

  10. mrsmole says:

    I’m always here if you need me…send photos and questions!

  11. accordion3 says:

    I’m flabbergasted to hear the super short dress bride needs a super short bridesmaids dress. Perhaps a super short bridesmaids dress will put a bun in her oven.

    Would love to hear (see) what maternity clothes she would choose.

  12. Theresa says:

    I wonder if the bride knows how short the dress is going to be. Entertaining post as always. Nice veggies!

  13. girl in the stix says:

    Oh, Lord! I’m under 5′ and I wouldn’t wear something only 14″ long. Have you ever just said, “No, what you want to do is a crime against good taste and offends my delicate sensibilities!” ๐Ÿ˜‰ I just wonder what these women see when they look in the mirror. RE: garden—never turn your back on the zucchini! It will grow to monstrous proportions and take over the world . . .
    Have a great day!

    • mrsmole says:

      I have argued with women who want stupid short hems but they refuse to budge. I shake my head and tell them, “Don’t tell anyone I did this” for it is my name on these dresses once they leave. Finally had to tie ropes to my caged butternut squash as they are going nuts up and over the tops of the cages and threatening to tip over! They will make an appearance later in the Fall…some as big as my head!

  14. Whew…I would hate to see the pics from that first wedding…:)
    Hope you have a nice vacation planned for the end of wedding season!
    Great to see your garden – you’ve had quite a good yield from it this year ๐Ÿ™‚

    • mrsmole says:

      With months of 100 degrees the poor plants have been pumping out produce like never before and the wine growers are harvesting grapes earlier in the season than in 35 years…who knows what else is coming…

  15. I wonder if that shortening of the bridesmaid dress was sanctioned by the bride, it’d be funny if it wasn’t and all sorts of drama ensued! lol Also, when I think of “rustic wedding”, I think of an outdoor wedding and the possibilities of wind, I doubt that fluttery material will provide even 14″ with a tiny breeze..

  16. mrsmole says:

    Wind or no wind just a few twirls and dips in the line dancing will reveal more than the bride bargained for…it says…”I’m a bridesmaid and I can be the star of this wedding”..not good. All the bride asked for was for the girls to show up in lilac…as in purple, not …Li-Lack (of enough fabric to cover your butt). Imagine the professional photos….a row of lovely lilac dresses and one hooker chick with cowboy boots….sad.

    • Monique says:

      Shudder. So awful! This woman sees herself in a distorted mirror of her own making, that’s for sure.
      But those zucchinis could give me nightmares ๐Ÿ˜‰ What a crop! Enjoy them. I suppose a garden is a great way to balance the madness of the sewing room.

      • mrsmole says:

        It does make my other non-sewing muscles work out…instead of pushing fabrics through and under the presser foot I get to yank on weeds and dig holes and trim branches and deadhead flowers…and after 3-4 hours of hot labor usually Mr Mole takes me out for a frozen coffee drink. The reward is worth it!

  17. jay says:

    Can’t shake my head in disapproval as I recall I used to buy half a yard for skirts back in the day. Then along came the maxi…..

  18. mrsmole says:

    Didn’t we all wear hot pants and mini skirts back in the day but when you are a grown pregnant woman…it is time to cover up a little especially at a public gathering. Having one hot pregnant bridesmaid seems a bit out of touch and not very respectful of the bride and her forever photos. Call me crazy….

  19. jillybe says:

    Do you EVER get a client who says “I know this is going to be a challenge…”?

    That said, may the “It will be so simple” clients keep coming….just so that you can keep us entertained! ๐Ÿ˜€

  20. mrsmole says:

    You are so sweet, Jilly….I’m afraid they will keep coming just like they do for all the other seamstresses that visit this blog…we can only shake our heads and moan after they have left their “precious” with us to wrestle with and do things that probably should not ever be done for a ridiculously low price…ha ha Some clients ask if I really want to take on their project and probably have the fee at the back of their mind as well. If they even ask, I normally try to make them feel like it is no big deal and to have them relax with a fair price…and when their shoulders drop and a sign comes out of their lips…I know we have reached an agreement…Life is good!

  21. Gloria says:

    Mrs. Mole, I am making a dress for a sweet 16, and client wants stirred tule over the strapless bodice.. I’ve never done that, any suggestions as to where I can go to read up on that? Thanks!

    • mrsmole says:

      Is it shirred vertically or horizontally…did she show you a photo? Do you have a pleater attachment for your machine? Does she want the tulle to match in color?

  22. Pingback: How to Tell if Clothing is Well-Made | The Fashion Foot

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