Thursday, May 22, 2008

Modifying an Immodest Shirt

The overly-tight neckline!

Sewing a straight-stitch around the elastic and slightly gathering it.

This photo is a little blurry since I did a timed shot of myself but you can see the results of the modified shirt!

If you've ever been pregnant, you've probably gotten to the point of feeling like you have literally nothing to wear that fits, or nothing that looks remotely attractive. I love my two e-bay shirts, but I am starting to think people must think I should try wearing something different once in a while! So, when I spotted a beautiful maternity shirt at Wal-Mart, of all places, I was drawn to try it on. Usually our Wal-Mart just carries a few ugly t-shirts and a few pair of maternity pants and that's it. But, when the shirt fit, and I loved the look of it, I bought it even though, gasp, it wasn't on clearance and was more than I would normally ever pay for a shirt!

When I got it home, I just knew I would probably wear it almost everyday for the next few months because it was so cheery and pretty. That is, until I actually wore it and discovered, horror of horrors, that it was quite immodest! Sometimes, a quick look in the dressing room doesn't reveal how a shirt will fit when you are moving around, holding toddlers or bending over. While I had bought a size larger than my normal in the hopes that it would continue to fit even when my belly is at it's biggest, I hadn't realized that the neckline would make me so uncomfortable and would constantly shift to show my bra.

So, what did I do? I whipped out my needle and thread, unwilling to lose my new favorite shirt! I sewed carefully by hand around the elastic neckline and gently pulled on the thread to gather it so it would tighten up the neckline.

However, I under-estimated the power of a little gathering. I made the hole sooooo tight my head would barely go through it! When I did squeeze my head through, I noticed the bustline of the shirt was unnaturally high and so the shirt wasn't quite as attractive or comfortable.

So, I ripped out my stitches, and re-did my gathers, this time I didn't pull so tight and I started by doing the section between the shoulders. Then I slightly gathered each side from about front-middle up about 4 inches. I tried it on and PERFECTO! Not so tight that I can't get it in it, but not so loose that it will reveal more than it should. The bustline of the shirt falls in a flattering spot and all is well!

The moral of the story is: Buy clothes that are in your size, not a size above! Bend over, move around and wiggle in the dressing room so that you can see how a shirt shifts around. If you do have a neat shirt that you wish you could wear, but it has a low neckline, there are ways of fixing it. Sewing an underpiece across a V-neck or adding some lace or something can sometimes fix a shirt. It is as easy as pie to fix a gathered neckline like I just did. I also lifted the shoulders on one of my shirts by taking in an inch or two to raise the neckline.

Now I can wear a comfy, cool, MODEST blouse this summer without having to wear another shirt under it!


Mrs. Taft said...

I am so impressed. Go you! It looks great! <3

SamAndHisGirls said...

Good job! That is seriously the cutest shirt. I may have to go browse Walmart and see if I can find a matching one -- ha! (unless that would drive you crazy) I'm always looking for good maternity shirts that fit. You look great! I'm still think I'm much bigger than you. I'll post a side shot soon. Have a great day! :)

Mom2fur said...

Wow, that's a really cute blouse, especially for one from Wal-Mart. (You are right, most of that stuff is awful.) Good for you, altering it to make it 'yours.' I'm not really big on the modesty thing, but I do have my comfort zone and showing my bra or cleavage doesn't really fall in there. Besides, bra-showing is right up there with those yutzes who show undies when they crouch down. Ick! My favorite thing to make something more modest is layering--and it's in style, too!

ohhollyf said...

Oh yeah that looks more comfortable.

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