Good thing I did, too, because this dress required a LOT of fitting, and I think I would have lost patience if I tried to stop sewing, go up to my bedroom, try the dress on myself, pin, take measurements, take off the dress, get dressed in my other clothes again, trot downstairs, and get set to sew again every time I had to make an adjustment. That is how I have sewed every garment for myself all my life....until now. Being able to spin around in my chair and have a body to fit this dress on right next to my machine was such a luxury!
This particular project was enjoyable not only because I was using my dress form for the first time, but also because it was altering, and I love altering; I think it's my favorite form of sewing. Less work for store-bought-looking (hopefully) results! It's also almost always cheaper. This dress, for instance, cost me only the price of a invisible zipper; I already had the original dress, and the extra blue fabric was left over from another project.
I bought this dress ages ago, from Good Will, and because it reveals too much skin for me to feel comfortable wearing it alone, I always had to wear a shirt over it - borrowed from my sister Heather, since I don't have a matching shirt. Another con to this dress is that, though you can't see it very well in the photo, this garment was cut on the bias, or something, and it hangs really, really, really oddly on my body. As in weird. As in "it starts to look as if I have lumps on my body in random places" kind of weird.
So I had nothing to lose by cutting up this dress. I love the blue flowers, so I really hoped to make something wearable out of it.
For those of you interested in details:
I brought the skirt up several inches, to create a wider skirt and so I could use the extra fabric to fill in the top. I found an old pattern that has a high waist, and played with the top pieces until I had something I liked, and used them to cut out the bodice pieces, putting the two colors together and treating them like single pieces. The sleeves are my own creation, and are really just tubes gathered in the right places, and narrowed a bit under the arm.
The waist band was the hardest part, but it's really just pleated fabric that I tacked to a muslin backing to get it to lay right. All that had to be done by hand. The skirt is pleated in four places and attached to the waistband.
The dress has two covered buttons in the front - don't you love covered buttons? - but they are just for show. It has a 22" invisible black zipper down the back.