Vogue 1183: Help Please?

I had such high hopes for this dress. I was hoping to get lots of wear out of it during the summer. However it has been shelved because, so far, it looks like this:

I was going to ask my sister to take another photo of me seeing as I half blinked in this one but I thought that it was quite in line with how the dress turned out. Also, yes, I haven’t hemmed it yet, it’s just too disheartening.

Where did I go wrong? It is baggy in all the wrong places and too tight in others:

And the fabric is definately not strong enough to hold that upright cross-over shape in the bodice (I pinned it together in the photo at the top).

What a disappointment. I was going to shelve it away and ignore the fact that it didn’t turn out at all, even vaguely wear-able; put it in a drawer somewhere and never look at it again.

Then I thought that’s not what this blog is for. This blog is for learning (geeky, I know). So here is my question – how do I fix this dress? Where should I pull it in? Or let it out? If I take it in at the sides then will it make the front even more gape-y? Or is it just too late?

All suggestions muchly appreciated.

15 thoughts on “Vogue 1183: Help Please?”

  1. I have not even started yet, I still need to make my dress form (this weekend’s project). Well I agree with the comment about adding some darts. I don’t think this is a complete failure. You may be able to salvage your dress with some help xx


  2. I read all the replays fitting takes a little math fit your pattern first go to my blog I have a black eyelet blouse that I redid the pattern to fit ,there was a fitting on patterns on UTube it works . Just remember one thing a little is a lot all the seams must be equal for the bodice to fit right .I am not a professional either sit down watch a little Tv and ripe out the seams . I bet I have at least 8 tops that do not fit .it is the hardest to learn.If I can do it so can you keep up the good work we are all cheering for you.have a great day BGR


  3. Hello there, congratulations for having the encouragement to post it, That is an important part of learning!! Well done you,

    I agree with the other posts, but I wonder if the length of your size form “top shoulder-neck” alongside to your waist line is the key for this problem (in my opinion), I assume you used a commercial pattern, and not one made to your own measurements, right? Then I can’t see very well but again, I assume it has a solution just right in the middle, under the bust line you have this piece which can be adjusted to your body.

    I suggest you wear it wrong-side out and then do it properly with pins over the seam already is there, later do a run-stitch and try it again right-side and think how it looks.

    If you have the time, post more pics and we can think about it a bit more if that doesn’t work.

    Good luck and carry on!! 🙂


  4. I agree with others that you need a smaller bust than the dress you made. For the gaposis, there are several fixes. One of the quick n dirty fixes is to fold a small dart , like 1/8 inch, out of the neckline of your pattern and kinda smush it down. I know, messy, but it can help tighten up the neck. Sandra Betzina is a wiz at gaposis fixes. I don’t know if any are on her website, but it’s worth a check. Otherwise, I’d topstitch the cross-over section or slip stitch it so that the stitching isn’t noticeable, but it’s held together.
    It looks like you may need a bit more room in the hip as well.

    If I were you, I’d use this dress as a “muslin” and try to work out fitting fixes on this one, but not try to fix this one to wear out, if that makes sense.


  5. Hmmm… looks tricky. Hard to tell without seeing a close-up of how it sits across the bust and shoulders, but on initial glance perhaps if you unpicked the upper waist seam and then either re-pinned the bust so it had some very small tucks to bring it in to the waist piece or trimmed the bust piece to make it slightly narrower, then it might fit tighter… Good luck!


    1. I agree with narrowing the waistband from top to bottom. I think some of those wrinkles are from that. I can’t really see what else needs work, but its a thought.


  6. Hello there. I’ve no expert advice to leave, I’m still very much learning how to fit things to my own body let alone anyone else’s 🙂 Are you as neat and petite in real life as you look in your photo? In which case, I wonder if you might need some petite frame/small bust adjustments? I know that this is one of my major fitting ‘issues’ and with bodices made of several pieces I find myself taking in seams randomly until I get a better fit.
    Keep going though, there’s so much work in there already and it could be a useful pattern to get right and then adapt?!


  7. Well done on getting the dress made that far!!! I am far from a seasoned seamstress but there is a really good dressmaking book by Marian Corey (1950s) that floats around on etsy and ebay from time to time … it sounds like you are in the “fitting” stages… Corey goes through the order in which to fit a dress. There is also the Simplicity sewing book that goes through typical fitting issues and solutions (with pictures of where a dress may be ill-fit etc). There are lots of versions of that which float around fairly cheaply second hand too.
    Unfortunately, I am travelling right now so I can’t tell you the “order” that Corey recommends, but I am pretty sure it is the shoulders… I will try and post it for you when I am home.


    1. Hmmm maybe I’ll post some more photos tonight so that it’s easier to see. The bodice is made out of several panels so I might need to show that to demonstrate the problem.


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