I'm not quite sure where to start with this post so I'll just 'plunge' straight in.
I've got big boobs!
This is no boast my friends quite the opposite, without getting deeply embroiled in a moaning monologue, they make clothes shopping very depressing if not almost impossible.
I don't own any blouses or shirts, I have 2 dresses. The first was bought about 3 years ago for a wedding (floaty and far too dressy for everyday wear) and the second was bought in desperation from a charity shop last year whilst away on holiday when there was an unexpected heatwave and I'd only packed jeans and jumpers!(this one being rather Monroe-esque and far too clingy for my ample figure). My entire wardrobe seems to be made up of dark trousers and stretchy t shirts.
Now I'm really quite a girly girl and occasionally I'd like to dress as such, nothing fancy just a simple dress and pretty flipflops when its warm, you know the kind of thing.
As you may have noticed I'm quite handy with a sewing machine. I can stitch up a fabric cupcake or a pretty bunny rabbit without too many problems so I thought, why not have a go at making your own dress Fiona.
Now I have dabbled with dress making once or twice before. At the age of 12 I made a hidious brown polyester A line skirt at junior school. At about 16 I made a pair of floral baggy elasticated shorts and in my 20's I managed quite a nice v neck fitted dress, so I know my way around a pattern, notches, seam allowance, tailors tacks etc., shouldn't be too much of a problem...
With the help of my mum I carefully chose my pattern, multi sized, flattering crossover v neck, simple straps and back. I'd even thought about how to customise it myself to give extra bossom room. How difficult could it be?
Here are my THREE calico attempts at getting the bodice to fit! You can see the last one has notes written on it to help if I'm ever desperate enough to pick it up and have another try!
I altered the armholes, I added more fabric under the bust, I even made darts where there weren't any... all in vain. I tried it on, I pinned, I took it off, I snipped, I stitched, I tried it on, I pinned I took it off. On and on until I chucked it on the floor and pouted like a child.
Now I don't like to be beaten. I had set out to make a dress and a dress I was going to have. After a quick rummage in my fabric stash I pulled out a length of navy jersey type fabric that was about 14 years old. I remember buying it from a Laura Ashley remnants basket with the intention of making child #2 some leggings when she was a toddler (she's now 16 and wouldn't be seen dead in Laura Ashley). I grabbed a stretchy crossover top from my wardrobe and plonked it on the fabric and drew around it. Without any measuring or messing around I quickly cut it out and started stitching. What I haven't told you is that it was now 4pm and we were going out with friends for a meal a 7pm.
I snipped and stitched like a woman possessed, not bothering to measure, tack or mess around making sure my seam allowances and turnings were correct.
two and a half hours later...
Home made maxi dress with tie belt.
Home made maxi dress with tie belt.
And yes I wore out to our dinner date even though I'd not had time to turn the hem up, (nobody noticed) and I felt wonderful in it. It's sooooo comfortable and girly, I can't wait to wear it again.
Don't laugh! I know it looks... well ... odd, but it was the only thing I could think to do, to make my lovely slender maniquin (Ethel Maud) more my shape. Necessity, the mother of invention and all that. This is attempt #3.
My own design again but with a stable fabric.(I told you I don't like to be beaten.)
It's NOT going well.
I'll keep you informed...
Edited to add...
For all of you girls out there with plenty of 'boobage' (I love that term Bibbitybob and if I could, I'd give you some) Bravissimo do a range of clothes for big boobed women called Pepperberry. A little out of my everyday price range but much better than the stuff they used to do.