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Have you every worked hard to sew dresses or other patterns to find the finished article just didn’t fit right or just didn’t look good on you? For me it has always been my wide shoulders, many years ago it was also my small waist and small bust, which are long gone now.

Recently a friend asked me if I could give her daughter sewing lessons. After a few lessons making simple craft projects to get her used to her machine, we ventured on to a pattern for a top. She worked hard and put together a very nice top which, of course, we had to alter along the way. I realized most patterns I have ever worked with have had to be altered to fit correctly. Sometimes that was due to the choice of pattern style but most times it was because the way the pattern sizes were proportioned.

Wouldn’t it be nice to know how to alter patterns so that you don’t have to remake them along the way? I have picked up some tips and tricks that have worked for me during the 40 some odd years I have been sewing that may help other sewers along the way. So I thought I would share some of these with anyone who stumbles along this site.

So here is one of the most helpful tips I have found to help you sew dresses and other patterns as my first tip.

TIP #1 is to try on the paper pattern before cutting it out. Ok, so you can’t really try it on completely but you can try it half way on. This often is enough to save some of the bigger alterations and often a lot of heartaches. To do this, cut the pattern pieces apart and pin them together along the seam lines and also pin any darts. Hold the half dress/top/pants up to yourself or a dress form to make sure it fits properly. You will be able to see areas that are too big or too small and see how much you will need to adjust at that point. If you make those alterations before you cut, you will save yourself some of the frustrations when you sew dresses, or whatever the project is, together.

I hope you find this tip to be helpful. As I run across other helpful sites, I will post to those also. Other sites or books will also be highlighted to give you other helpful information on how to sew dresses and more that fit and flatter you. Be sure and check back often for new tips and tricks I will be adding in the near future. In the mean time, happy sewing!

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About Author

I've been sewing since I was a child (a long, long time ago) and recently my daughter showed an interest in making something special. Bringing out the sewing machine always makes me wonder why I ever put it away. I really enjoy sewing and creating things to wear and look forward to sharing all the tips and tricks I use to help make things fit and flatter me when I sew dresses and anything else.