Tuesday, October 08, 2013

12th Sewing Project: Bridesmaid Dress Alteration

Recently I had the privilege of becoming a bridesmaid/jimui for the fourth time around. Oh wait, what was that old saying again? "Three times a bridesmaid never a bride"? Hahaha let's hope there's no truth in those words!

My friend had bought all the bridesmaids dresses in "free size" in Bangkok a while back. As expected, the dress was a little ill-fitting for myself - it wasn't unwearable but it was unflattering. I think I have had my fair share of being immortalised in friends' wedding photos as the frumpy bridesmaid!

Before, in the process and after!

As my usual tailor (mum's childhood friend) was away in the States, I had no one to alter my dress. I knew no other seamstress and was clueless of the rates, so I decided to try my hand at tweaking the dress. Started out with grand ideas of opening up the seams, shortening the waistband and narrowing the shoulder width. But I realised that it was too risky as I still had to wear the dress no matter what the outcome.

Checking in with reality, I thought up of cheat ways to give the dress a little better form, namely sewing down the chest pleats backed by half inch grosgrain ribbon strips to give the pleats some support and shortening the collar by creating a mock box pleat at the nape of my neck. I also moved the collar button down so that the teardrop opening would not reveal too much.

As you can see, my ways of visualising my ideas before starting work is kind of unconventional - clothes peg and masking tape (what can I say, I'm horrible with pinning down fabric!) - but it helped indicate the feasibility of the ideas.

It took me one night of hand-sewing to complete my mission. The outcome: No drastic changes but the dress had a better fit. Lesson learned: Sometimes there's benefits of being a little more fleshier, like being able to fit nicely into a free-size dress! Eat more!

The wedding? My friend, we had been pretty close in Form 6, and now she was getting married! So much we've been through together in those two years and I'm really happy she has found a family to call her own. A very pretty wedding in Ritz Carlton KL, in tandem with the cuteness of the bridal couple.

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