The snooker table dress that shrunk….

Another Megan make from me today, this is my second which I started almost immediately after my first (here). I loved the pattern from Tilly & The Buttons Love at First Stitch book, and I thought it would be a good fit for a more formal “work” dress. Turns out it is….except when your husband accidentally washes wool on a higher temperature it will shrink!!! I wrote this post after the first wear and before we took photos – when I put it on for photos I realised it had shrunk a size in the wash! Husband seems quite happy with the tightness – go figure – but I unfortunately have now had to cast my lovely dress to the back of the wardrobe *sob!

Megan dress

Just to show off my complete dressmaking noviceness, I wasn’t actually sure what this fabric was initially. It was another from my dear old Nan’s stash so no labels to check. I described it to my sister-in-law as a bit like felt but nicer, and she patiently pointed out that it’s a wool blend. Forest green isn’t usually a colour I’d go for but as it was free fabric and it feels like good quality, I thought what the heck, so I’m rocking my inner snooker table.

Megan is such a lovely pattern to work with, simple and effective with a lovely shape, so I expected this to be even easier to run up than my first attempt. Shame then that I had to go and make life complicated for myself. I made up a straight size 8 from the pattern last time (obviously Tilly uses a different sizing structure to the High Street, as it’s the only time I’ve been a size 8 in my life) and it was too big, so I had to take it in quite a lot and add in extra darts at the back. This time, buoyed by the recent Craftsy fitting course I’d done I thought I’d attempt to amend the pattern to fit all my measurements, rather than pinning and adjusting. All was going well until I went to put the bodice on the skirt. The bodice and skirt darts were miles apart and the skirt was about an inch and a half bigger than the bodice! Aside from feeling like a bit of a fool for tampering with what had seemed to be a pretty foolproof pattern, I was also left feeling like a slightly freakish shape, but that’s another story.

Definite shrinkage - I didn't eat that many cakes in 3 days!
Definite shrinkage – I didn’t eat that many cakes in 3 days!

I considered unpicking the darts on the skirt and moving them into alignment, but as it was only the third item I’d made, I decided to just style it out, and thankfully they don’t look too out of place when it’s actually on. In future I’ll just pin and fit until I’ve got a better understanding of fitting and amending patterns.

The only other changes I made were to the neckline. I didn’t quite have enough fabric to do a matching facing, so I just folded the neckline and topstitched. I have also got a cute crochet collar that I bought from Etsy for about £4 – I must learn how to make them myself! I’ve not actually added the collar now due to shrink-gate so will have to save it for another dress.


I French-seamed all of the inside so I’m really happy with how neat it is. It was the first time I’d tried French seams and I’m a convert now.

I think my next Megan is going to be a dressier one with a shorter hemline, more suitable for a night out. Any fabric suggestions?

Has anyone else messed up on an easy pattern or had issues with fitting? I’d love to know I’m not alone!

The Sewdown

Pattern: Megan, Tilly & The Buttons

Price: Included in Love At First Stitch

Fabric: Forest Green Wool Blend, source unknown

Difficulty Rating: Easy

Love Level: * * * * *

Make Again? Definitely


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s