I’ve been wearing my maternity tanks to death since I sewed them, but I felt like I needed something a little more special for Sunday mass and date nights. When Lauren pointed out how nursing-friendly the new True Bias Southport Dress pattern was, I realized how easily it could be adjusted into the perfect maternity/nursing dress to wear for the rest of this summer.
The dress turned out just like I wanted which makes me feel like some sort of sewing super hero. Not that I figured it all out the first try. I actually made the shorter version of this dress first as a wearable muslin. I wear it as a tunic top, and I think I will be wearing that version even more often this fall with leggings and a sweater.
The polyester crepe was a big pain to work with but it drapes so beautifully. The drape is crucial, or I would look like some sort of large green blimp roaming the church cry room. (or maybe I do anyways, but please don’t tell me. I get enough “are you due next week!?” comments to make me feel huge and awkward as it is. k thx.)
These pictures are actually a couple of weeks of belly-growth old. Andy and I got to escape to Amish Country for a night to celebrate our 10th anniversary at the end of May. 10 years sounds so established! I guess we are now. We can no longer claim to be newly-weds, or new parents. We’ve gotten through some really tough times in the last few years, and it feels like we are entering a season of respite. Neither of us could have planned for or guessed all the hard or good things that these last 10 years have brought, and we have so much hope and excitement to see what the next will bring. It was so very good to spend time with my love and celebrate the life we have created together. (or should I say “lives”?) #mush
What better way to celebrate than to force him to take photos of my chest for my blog? (Thanks, honey!)
One little note of advice, do not use store-bought bias tape for binding the neck and armholes. I tried on my muslin and it turned out so poorly. It was definitely worth the effort to make my own out the fabric scraps for this version.
- Pre-Pregnancy Measurements: Bust: 40.5 inches; Waist: 38.25 inches; Hips: 49.5 inches; Height: 5’10”
- Current Bust: 42 inches
- Pattern: True Bias Southport Dress (maxi version)
- Fabric: Polyester Crepe from LowPriceFabric.com (4 yards, 60 inches wide)
- Bodice: Size 16
- Raised armhole 1/4 inch, took the underarm seam in 1/4 inch (1/2 inch total at each seam)
- I did not reduce the length of the bodice because I am taller. A shorter woman might want to raise the waistline for maternity-wear.
- Added 1 inch to the waist seam allowances, which was used to make an elastic casing to support the weight of the skirt.
- Skirt: Graded to size 18
- Removed center front seam, cut on fold instead
- Added 5 inches in length (pattern designed for woman 5 inches shorter than me)
- When hemming, I trimmed off 3 1/2 inches from the hem everywhere except at the center front. I then made a 1/2 inch narrow hem. This raised the hem of the skirt about 2 inches from the floor. I will probably need to re-hem after pregnancy to fix the length of the skirt in the center front.
- Slashed-and-Spread to add 1 1/2 inch at the hips to front and back (this added a total of 6 inches hip circumference)
- Maternity Adjustment: I slashed-and-spread the pattern to add three 2 inch pleats (6 total overall, adding 12 inches to the front skirt) to the front skirt piece to account for my growing belly. In order to avoid too much fabric in the front hem, these pleats were added like a dart extending to the hem (a triangle wedge instead of a rectangle)
- Added side ties instead of drawstring
This might be the end of my maternity sewing for this pregnancy. I can hardly believe I just a have a few short weeks left!
Oh my, how lovely you are in this! I think you have put one more checkmark into my “reasons to make Southport Dress” list. You look so awesome in this maternity version and now I can’t wait to see it reworked into a sweet nursing dress.
Gorgeous dress on a gorgeous lady! Gonna remember your hack for my future 🙂
… how near a future are we talking here? 😉
This is so damned pretty! I’m glad you made yourself something beautiful o where while pregnant – I’m sure it was tempting to save the pretty fabric, but I bet it makes your day every time you wear it! Love!
I was going to use it last summer but then I broke my leg! Carpe Sclissors-um or something.
You are gorgeous and I love this dress. Sounds like you have had a nice escape. Happy 10 year anniversary
So summery and wonderful and perfectly fitting 🙂 you are amazingly talented! And beautiful! Happy anniversary!
Olga Becker says
You look gorgeous, so so beautiful! Love the dress! Stunning! Happy anniversary!
That’s just beautiful on you! I really appreciate that nice level hem too… those are difficult to find in maternity dresses!
I’m not sure how long it will last… my belly keeps growing! 🙂 haha
Liza Jane says
You look beautiful!
awww. thank you.