The Church Courtyard > General Catholic Discussion

Modifying clothing to make it more modest

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Penelope:
A spinoff from the 'WOMEN. PANTS.' thread here. Just thought I'd share some of the ways I've made simple alterations to store-bought clothing to make it more modest. Note that I have no real sewing ability, no business going anywhere near a sewing machine, and that I do everything by hand.

One problem that I find is that because I'm so short, the torso in many dresses is too long for me. Sometimes this means that I have to take the dresses to the tailor, but if it's a sleeveless dress, I can shorten the straps with a little bit of hand-stitching. This often has the added bonus of making the neckline higher. Then I can wear a cardigan over the dress.

For dresses and shirts with a low V-neck, usually I'll just wear a tank top or camisole underneath, but I find myself getting annoyed with too many layers, so what I've started doing is buying some cheap tank tops from places like Marshall's and cutting them and then sewing part of the tank tops into the dresses or shirts to fill the V. The appearance is similar to wearing a camisole but with fewer layers, so no bunching of the tank top around my waist.

Here's a tip that I found online when a friend linked to a crafting blog on Facebook (here's the link, but be aware that even with the adjustments, the dress pictured may still be considered immodest): If a dress is a bit too short, add a lace trim to the hemline. I've done this with two dresses so far and I really like the results.

In trying to find that crafting blog again, I came across some similar tutorials for lengthening hemlines using fabric bands. These ones might be for the more advanced seamstresses. Again, a caution: while the first link below shouldn't cause any issues for Catholic eyes, the second one features a skirt that is pretty short, even after the lengthening. However, the idea can be applied to skirts and dresses of a more appropriate length.

http://seekatesew.blogspot.com/2012/07/lengthen-dress-with-band-of-fabric.html
http://sarahdudik.wordpress.com/2012/07/21/denim-skirt-lengthened/

OCLittleFlower:
Another option to fill in low cut dresses without having a tank top bunch up at the waist (I have that issue too -- short torsos unite!) is to get a tube top bra thing to wear in place of the tanktop.

Lirael:
I like wearing a low cut/inappropriate cut (sleeveless, racerback, etc) dress and wearing a higher cut shirt over top so it looks like the dress is a skirt. This has definitely expanded my church wardrobe.

Lyubov:

--- Quote from: Lirael on January 05, 2013, 04:54:23 PM ---I like wearing a low cut/inappropriate cut (sleeveless, racerback, etc) dress and wearing a higher cut shirt over top so it looks like the dress is a skirt. This has definitely expanded my church wardrobe.

--- End quote ---

I've done this before, but the opposite way (wearing a longer skirt over top of a dress). It sounds weird, but it looked good!

Penelope:

--- Quote from: Lyubov on January 07, 2013, 01:14:26 AM ---
--- Quote from: Lirael on January 05, 2013, 04:54:23 PM ---I like wearing a low cut/inappropriate cut (sleeveless, racerback, etc) dress and wearing a higher cut shirt over top so it looks like the dress is a skirt. This has definitely expanded my church wardrobe.

--- End quote ---

I've done this before, but the opposite way (wearing a longer skirt over top of a dress). It sounds weird, but it looked good!

--- End quote ---

I've done both of these before. They're both good tricks.

Here's another that I've done: Often, I'll find a great skirt--good length, good fit... but it's too sheer. (Sheer fabrics are so popular, it seems). Sometimes the skirts just don't have linings at all; sometimes they have linings but are still too sheer. What I've been doing is buying slips when they're on sale and then sewing these into my skirts as linings/back-up linings. This has worked out pretty well so far!

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