Does my bust look big in this?

Being far from a standard dress size, I knew I would have sizing issues with my latest project.  I happened to buy extra fabric for this, so rather than making a proper toile, I’ve risked making one out of the spare material I already had.  This way, if the toile fits, I won’t have to make another one – bonus!

After taking my measurements and deciding which size to cut I got to have a go at tracing – fun and easier than expected.  I just traced the top half of the dress because I was using see-through paper.  I used a tracing wheel (exciting!) and a roll of brown paper for the bottom half, which worked surprisingly well.  The little spikes on the tracing wheel don’t look like they’re up for much but they really do their job.  So make sure to put a protective layer over anything valuable, like your antique dining room table or wooden floor, before using a tracing wheel!

Once pinned, the pieces gaped at the back of my neck and were far too big around my waist, but fit perfectly around my bust.  No surprises there.  At least my measurements were accurate.

So, I cut my fabric pieces and we set to work at resizing them, pinning the side seams and changing the darts, so that everything pinched in more at the waist.  I say ‘we’, but I mean Danielle – she was the one doing all the hard work.  I just stood there, really.

We had to ditch the pattern a bit, to be honest.  The top half was so different by the time we were done, that we just had to ‘make it fit’ the bottom half somehow – I can’t even remember how it happened!

By the way, don’t you just love the fabric?  Sadly, I have no idea who makes it because this was an eBay find – I just liked the print so much, I had to buy it right away.  If you do some searches for ‘Red Riding Hood fabric’, there are so many lovely designs.  I think this one is a cotton blend, but I can’t be sure.

photo (4)


I’m hoping to finish my dress at next week’s sewing bee, so stay tuned for picture of the finished garment!


2 thoughts on “Does my bust look big in this?

  1. I haven’t used a pattern yet. The whole point of learning to sew was to make things That. Actually. Fit.

    I got tired of the worthless dressing room sessions at department stores and the constant returns to catalogs. Buying ready made clothes was a constant exercise in disappointment and compromise. If it fit, the color sucked. If I liked the color, they only had two left in XS. If I liked the style, the price tag was enough to induce an anxiety attack. If the piece was perfect, it lasted for four washes and then fell apart. (sigh)

    Thank goodness for my Husqvarna and the new fabric store they built last fall.


    1. Yes, I’m glad I’m learning to make adjustments – I’m sure a little bit sank in. It’s true that shopping when you’re not a standard size all over can be very stressful and depressing. It’s a relief to know it’s not just me who hates the shopping experience. 🙂


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