Thursday 26 March 2015

A full slip to wear under cotton dresses - a necessity!

The big problem of cotton dresses (at least in my opinion) is that they stick to your undergarments. They stick to vests, shorts, not to mention leggings. It does not look nice when your dress is clinging to you and it restricts your movements.

To solve this problem, I would usually fully line a dress. It takes a lot of time because you have to make to dress essentially twice. I decided it was time to sew a full slip. I had planned to make the Ruby Slip pattern, which is pinned to my pinterest board since last year, but sadly couldn't access the website anymore. I found another free slip pattern, but there was a problem: it didn't have any online instructions (by now I remembered that there is a slip pattern plus instructions in my GBSB book series 2 - next time!).

Pattern: Vintage slip pattern from House of Jo (in association with the Sew Magazine). It's free!

Fabric: I bought some 2-way stretch shinny fabric on a market stall. It was only £2.99/meter. It is blue, feels soft to the skin, frayed like crazy and I guess is polyester.

Construction: When I made the slip I couldn't find sewing instructions, but I've just seen that they are on Jo's website in the comment section. I decided to use french seams to have a neat finish and hide the fraying seams. Surprisingly this went very well.

However, I had problems finishing the neckline. In hindsight and as suggested by Jo, I should have finished the neckline with a binding or some lace. But I decided to attach the straps to it and then fold the raw edge of the neckline under twice. Which didn't work well. The neckline stretched out slightly and because of folding them twice, the straps are now too short.

It means the bust does not sit on the bust but above. It makes the dress too tight over the bust. I'm thinking about cutting the straps off the back and making a new piece of strap that I'm attaching to the old one and then to the back. If you have any other suggestions, please let me know.

You might notice that the bra cups look pointy. That is because the pattern tells you just to sew a triangle dart. I'm not sure if this is the style of vintage patterns? It does not show under the dress, so I'm inclined to leave it like that.

Have I worn it? Despite it's fault I have worn the slip underneath some cotton dresses and it fulfills its function. It prevents the clinging of the cotton to my undergarments, yeah!

Will I make it again? I would like to make it again, now that I know how to finish the neckline. The only problem, there are too many other garments that tempt me and not to mention my wedding dress.


  1. I've made two slips from this pattern, in fact I'm wearing one now! I curved my bust darts to get a better shape, but like you said, it just makes my dresses look so much much better. I finished the top edge by overlocking & turning twice before sewing the straps on. The centre front is a little narrow but a good press sorted it. Definitely extend your straps, you could add a little elastic for ease.

    1. Thanks for the tip to curve the bust dart. I will try this on my next version as well. I will definitively sew the straps on last in my next version, just to make sure they are not to short again!

  2. Well, I've been thinking of sewing a slip for months now but have not managed to do it just yet. I have a pattern from burda magazine, now that I saw your post you made me think it's time to trace that pattern and finally sew it.

    1. Go for it :) Despite it strap issues I like my slip a lot. It just makes it more comfy to wear cotton dresses. No more clinging:)

  3. I definitely know what you mean about cotton dresses sticking to everything! I have a couple of RTW slips that I wear with my dresses but I've been thinking about making my own one too. I'd definitely lengthen the straps if it makes it more comfortable to wear - the slip looks good so it would be a shame not to wear it!

    1. I hope I'm getting my mood up soon to change the straps. It's always so hard to pick up an item again (that I declared finished) and modify it.

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