I had the bright, time saving idea of threading my serger and coverstitch machine with the same hot pink thread and knocking out a few garments that used that color of thread. I figured I could finish them in a few days and be on to more spring sewing. That was before I made the same hot pink t-shirt 3 times and redesigned my nightgown 3 times. I wondered if I would ever get that hot pink thread off those machines. This is the first of two nightmare projects.
A while ago, I made myself a few nightgowns and wanted to improve on the ones I had made. I wanted to use a similar design and add splitting a one-piece bust into individual cups. So, I picked a pattern that looked similar to what I was trying to achieve, which happened to be McCall's M6351. It is a dress, but I figured it could translate into a nice nightgown. I dropped the fancy bands on the front and back from the beginning.
Then, I took out 24" of fabric in the top of the skirt and made it an A-line. Then, I ditched the back panel piece for a flat piece to put elastic into. Then, I crossed the straps in the back to keep them on my shoulders. So, you could say I learned a lot from the experience. Let me share my insights and save you time and hot pink thread:
1. Nightgowns don't need a full skirt added under the bust. It is too much fabric.
2. When using a woven, the top needs to fit firmly against the body. Elastic is your friend to help. Elastic in the back and under the bust line.
3. Adding to Number 2, when you use elastic, the bust cups must meet fairly high on the bust to keep them from pulling apart.
4. Spaghetti straps are better and more comfortable. Crossing them in the back keeps them on your shoulders as you toss and turn at night.
5. I added three rows of elastic on the back panel, with 5/8" elastic in them. Next time, go with narrower elastic for a softer feel.
I will wear this gown for few weeks and see if there are other modifications to make. I WILL master this project one day, just not the hot pink version from last week.
And in closing, if you want to make this dress from McCall's, be advised there is a ton of fabric in the skirt!
I'll share my other hot pink nightmare in a few days!