The Owl dress that was too small…
A few years back, a friend of mine introduced me to Fever Designs, and I went through a brief period of buying their dresses. This was before I could sew, and when I had a lot more disposable income!
One of the dresses was made by Fever’s sister company – Ruby Belle – and it had this fantastic owl print skirt that I loved. It has been folded up in the attic for the past few years, but I recently rediscovered it and tried it on, and this is what it looked like:
Too tight on the midriff/waist band, and across the bust. This was after I had hacked off the sleeve bands that were so tight I couldn’t even get my arms in to try the damn thing on! I remember the arms being tight at the time, actually – Fever never were any good at accommodating arms or boobs, even when I did mainly fit into their dresses.
Anyway, this owl dress was too good to leave hanging around in the loft, so I detached it from the original dress and made a new bodice using none other than the By Hand London Anna dress pattern. Surprisingly, once I had detached the skirt, the waist actually measured 34″ and so I didn’t need to alter it at all. It fit straight onto the Size 12 Anna bodice (which claims to be smaller than it actually is, as it says the finished waist measurement is 32.5″ whereas it is in fact 34″ excluding seam allowance).
I used black poplin from Boyes, which I’ve used for many sewing projects before and I’ve always been pleased with the quality of it – it washes and wears really well and is under £3 per metre. As I was only making the bodice, I bought 1m of fabric and a zip, so it didn’t cost much to get this dress back into my wearable wardrobe.
And one more photo of me twirling in the park: