I told myself that this pregnancy would be different. That this time around, with my increased skills and determination I would make maternity clothing for myself ... and here I am, 29 weeks pregnant and posting the first maternity item. I will say, this isn't the first item I've sewn, but instead the first real success. Something I can and WILL wear.
While scanning through my pdf patterns folder I came across the "T-shirt Dress" by Dixie Diy. I hadn't even remembered downloading it but after looking it over I felt it could be adapted to be a maternity dress without much stress. I'm no guru at making women's clothing - but I found this project to be pretty simple.
Looking at the size chart I found that (with my belly) my waist would fit about a size M, so I went ahead and cut that size out. Then I put the dress together to create the shell (sewing the shoulder and side seams). I then put the dress on inside out and stood with a mouthful of pins in front of my full length mirror.
I was able to determine how much smaller the top of the dress needed to be by pinching and pinning the fabric directly under my armpits to a comfortable fit. I also used a pin to mark where I wanted the dress to flare bigger to accommodate the belly. After removing the dress I could measure how much fabric needed to go (about 1.25 inches under the arms) and then with my fabric pen I created symmetrical lines for myself to sew on either side.
I then adjusted my sleeves to match the amount take off under the arms. This worked even better than planned because the arms in size M were much larger than my actual arms (normally I would likely need a size XS in the dress). I wanted them to be fitted, but also to leave myself a little wiggle room so the dress remained comfortable.
After getting everything put together and fitting nice, I wanted to add some definition to the area between my breasts and belly. I put the dress on inside out again, marked where my nipples were (haha, stick with me here!) then marked a general line where I wanted the definition to be.
With those marks I was able to keep the ruched portion slightly wider than my breasts and even. I grabbed some 1/4 in. elastic and stretched it across the line I had created from the spots marked 1 inch past either nipple lines. (yeah, that's what I'm calling them.)
Another alteration I made was the length of the neck binding. I found that when pinning, even though I hadn't adjusted the neckline, that the binding was about 2 inches larger than I needed it to be. I removed the excess fabric plus another half inch (ish). It still gaps a tad so next time I'll likely take off an extra full inch to 1.25 inches just to be on the safe side.
All in all, I really like the dress. The fit looks comfortable but not like a potato sack and it's easy to wear with a pair of jeans and boots. If I can find suitable fabric I'd be down to create another one of them!
Pattern: T-shirt Dress from DixieDIY.com
Fabric: Denver Fabric