This week someone on Facebook sent me a message. It went like this:
Are you still in business? I have a friend who needs a slight alteration to her daughter’s dress in a hurry.
I try not to do prom gowns and bridesmaids dresses when the sewing room is packed with wedding gowns but I said I would see her if she would send a photo. Well, as per usual, she did not send a photo but asked to come over the very next day with the girl and the gown and gave me 3 days to make some magic.
Same old story, “my daughter wanted a one-of-a-kind dress so we ordered one off the internet…and we don’t know what to do as it needs a little something as the zipper stops about 1/2 inch from the top.”
The front has a satin bodice under the beading and sheer knit but the back is completely sheer. Two layers of polyester are topped off with chiffon and all are cut from huge circles. I measured the chiffon hem circumference…10 yards…30 feet of narrow rolled hemming.
OK, any math wizards out there? From the top of the hook and eye to the tab of the reluctant zipper is 10 inches…10 inches, people! There is no way this baby will ever close without a wedge inserted. And where do we get a wedge to match perfectly? I’m going to cut a wedge from the skirt side seams of the 2 layers of satin lining and one layer of the chiffon.
Thinking this was the most perfect solution, I told the bride and mother and the bride started to get all pissy saying, “people will notice”…yeah, right, and they won’t notice that your zipper stops at your hip. The mother tried to settle her down after I showed them that the skirt was cut as a huge circle with volumes of fabric that would never show where a wedge was removed.
While the ribbons measure these amounts, with the sheer knit back, the actual wedge will be narrower for a very snug fit that the girl demanded.
First, one side of the zipper is removed from the knit back. Then a wedge is cut from the lining and satin from one side. One layer in interfaced with fusible and then the third layer of chiffon is added to the sandwich and stitched as a small curve at the top. Understitiching is done.
Pinned and ready to be run through the serger to neaten the edges:
Machine stitched right side and inside:
Now, at least, she can get the zipper up and have a good time at the Prom.
Some of you may have done this differently, like evenly adding to both side seams and increased the labor time, but I had 3 days to get this project out the door the cheapest way I could including the hemming of 2 massive layers of satin and one of chiffon ahead of the brides with their own deadlines.
When the mother paid for the dress she said, “we assume from now on we can come back anytime and have you do sewing for us”…that is when I handed her the card of the other seamstress I refer to…rush jobs and prom dresses have no place in my sewing room during the season!!!
Hoping all of your sewing projects this week are fun ones!!! Thank you to all the new followers for dropping by and to the die hard regulars who like photos of challenges!