Lace Topper and a Rush Dress

If you are a modest bride and feel like you are revealing too much in a strapless gown…what do you do?

You can think about adding a tulle covered ribbon halter or double spaghetti straps:



You also want the floor length dress shortened to tea length:

Well, if you are in an Outlet store like BHLDN, you can buy a jacket to cover up like this one for $220.


The bride said she paid more for the jacket than the dress and it kept riding up and flaring away from her body so I made French tacks along the top of the bodice to keep the lace in place.

Once a season I get a dress that was made for a bridesmaid or formal occasion that the bride fell in love with…here is a sparkly knit dress that was purchased at Ross for $20 and just needs the side seams to be taken in…sure, should be easy, right? That middle section/cummerbund in front is gathered into the side seam. Red thread tracing in place:

Oh oh, do you see what I see? The side seams and lining are completely enclosed and the horizontal seams have been sewn last and overlocked.

Might as well mark the lining with my green Frixion pen that will disappear with the heat of the iron. What is the weird black area in the serging? Threads caught in the seam in the factory…maybe that is why it was hanging in a discount store…who knows?












Next step is to remove the horizontal serging and take in 6 seams, 3 on each side and lining seams and close everything back up…that’s when I decided to flip the top bodice seams to the inside and serge them before attaching the waist section. It was tough enough grabbing the seams inside all that and taking them in, serging off and then flipping them right side out again with the waist and hip section without wrestling with the bodice.

The last horizontal seams were serged closed and the bride is ready for her wedding in 2 days…nothing like waiting until the last minute!!!


Simple yet elegant for a Fall wedding outside:


Our late Summer harvest before the frost comes:

Every year we have planted pepper plants and they have been disappointing but this year Mr. Mole started everything from Ferry Morse Sow Easy color coated seeds and we have had a real bounty!

This week sewing includes lots of reflection on the hurricane victims and what it would be like to have everything you own blown away or destroyed and no safe drinking water or electricity and now this morning news of the massacre shooting in Las Vegas. Having a sewing room to retreat to makes me very grateful indeed.

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20 Responses to Lace Topper and a Rush Dress

  1. I do like that little jacket! Please, please tell me she is not wearing those wooden heeled shoes with her tea length dress.

  2. mrsmole says:

    Oh No, Bunny, she was wearing them for the height only!

  3. I would have loved to have a cute jacket like that!

  4. fabrickated says:

    I like the over jacket idea too actually. Two layers – of tulle, or lacey stretch, or any translucent fabric always looks intriguing and sexy without being too full on.

  5. Luigina says:

    You indicated that you used “French tacks” on the lace jacket. Would you, please, explain what a French tack is? Perhaps I know it by another name. Thank you

  6. ceci says:

    I was concerned about the shoes too……phew. The jacket actually flares a bit below the bust on the model, too…..but your improvement solves that. I can think of a couple recent weddings where the bride would have been well served by a lace topper along these lines, although the price for RTW seems a bit steep.


    • mrsmole says:

      Wish I had a closet filled with lacy bolero jackets that I could recommend and sell to these busty strapless brides for their ceremony before they cut loose and dance all night.

      • ceci says:

        Right, you could whip them up in your “spare time”! Actually, a sample and a tried and true pattern might open up a new business stream! You could hire an apprentice to make them!


  7. Rena says:

    I’ve altered several $20 Ross dresses and they are not made with alterations in mind! Most have bagged linings, tiny seam allowances, and no structure. I get it for high school formals but maybe not a wedding!

    • mrsmole says:

      Ha ha…no hope in finding generous seams in anything from Ross or TJ Maxx but it sure makes sense to wander through there for a special occasion and if the dress really fits…a win/win! Lots of them have broken zippers too and I wish I could convince my older clients that replacing a zipper is not good sense!

  8. erniek3 says:

    I think I bought the curved blade scalpel JUST to slice open serger seams. I believe that alterations are mostly about removing previously applied thread. Like 99% thread/1%altering.
    And I am here to second the others; the lacy coverup really makes this dress sing.

    • mrsmole says:

      Me too, ErnieK…couldn’t manage without my scalpel! If we got paid for DE-construction as much as for CON-struction…we’d be driving way nicer cars and fancier shoes!

  9. sewruth says:

    This must be unusual in the Sewing Room, when you have to cater for a “modest” bride…….
    Strange times we live in – not just in your sewing room but across the world.

  10. mrsmole says:

    Strange times indeed, Ruth, with some days the best advice for getting through the day is not to read the news and go back to bed and pull the covers over your head. But you latest outfit is a real winner!

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